Simple to Complex Sand Art

In my china closet I have eight small containers of sand art that my son created while attending various state fairs and carnivals. The containers vary from a baseball form to a thin-necked jar to a cylindrical jar. The sand is layered in many colors from bright red to violet to blue and green. They are a precious remembrance of childhood and happy adventures. My son, who just turned 21, laughs that I still have these mementoes.

You can create your own sand art by simply buying colored sand in a craft store, saving an interesting jelly jar with a lid, and giving your child a chance to be creative. You can even create your own colored sand: Get some fine sand at a local beach. Be sure the sand is dry. Put the sand in a plastic bag and add food color. Allow the sand to dry and begin your colorful project.

To make an educational activity out of your sand project, create a color wheel. The primary colors, from which all colors are developed, are red, yellow, and blue. To make a color wheel you can save, first cover your work table with newspaper, to facilitate clean-up later. Then, take a piece of cardboard and cut it into whatever shape you want to use. Alternately, you can draw a circle onto the cardboard with a marker. For a Primary Color Wheel draw three lines so that the circle is divided into three equal parts.

Once your shape has been designed, apply a thin layer of glue over the surface. Then, using a small funnel, (you can create a funnel from paper and tape) apply the colored sand, one color at a time. Use a thin layer of sand so it will all stick to the glue. You may want to put the finished work in a large plastic bag or use a spray fixative (from an art supply store) to keep the sand from falling off. Your child can also draw on the cardboard and fill in the artwork. Make geometric designs with rulers and compasses and fill in the small blocks. Sand art has been around for centuries.

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