Collage Play, Outer Space

Rocket Design Play with Contact Paper

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Contact paper is one our favorite tools to facilitate design play. It is such a fun, easy way to engage your 1.5+ year old with art. Loose parts can be modified to make this process fun for every age, theme and season.

Impermanent art play is fun for everyone, but especially fantastic for budding perfectionists. The transient nature of the artwork takes the pressure off and lets the little artist play with the process and grow technical design skills without focusing on whether something looks “right”.

Playing with geometric shapes like the ones in this play invitation will help your little one develop pre-geometry/math skills as they learn and grow as artists.


  • Interesting loose parts that are flat enough to stick to contact paper (bits of paper and felt work nicely)
  • A tray or container
  • Tape for adhering contact paper to window
  • Contact paper
Contact paper and painter’s tape
Loose parts for contact paper play


  • Collect and set up the loose parts in divided tray
  • Hang contact paper on wall or window
  • Model the possibilities of how to use the materials
  • Let your child build and explore.

I usually leave contact paper play up for a week or more. Simply return loose parts to their tray each evening for a clean slate to play with every morning.

The felt loose parts from this activity also work nicely on The Nugget. No contact paper needed! We stumbled upon this adaptation this morning and will be using it often in addition to our contact paper play.

I hope you give this easy-to-facilitate method a try soon. Have fun!

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