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Torn Paper Snowman Collage Craft for Grade School Students

written by: Elizabeth Wistrom • edited by: Donna Cosmato • updated: 12/5/2012

Students of all ages will have fun learning about the use of torn paper collage in literature, and then creating their own snowman by mimicking the style. These snowman crafts for kids will be works of art!

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    Books With Paper Collages

    Many children's illustrators use the torn paper collage technique in their picture books. Eric Carle, Leo Lionni, Lois Ehlert, Ezra Jack Keats, and Bryan Collier are just a few well-known examples. Before beginning these snowman crafts for kids, spend some time with your students exploring their works. Here is a list of books and their authors to get you started:

    Eric Carle

    • Grouchy Ladybug, Tandem Library The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle 
    • The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Philomel Books
    • The Tiny Seed, Little Simon
    • 10 Little Rubber Ducks, HarperCollins

    Leo Lionni

    • Little Blue and Little Yellow, HarperCollins
    • Frederick, Knopf Books
    • Swimmy, Knopf Books
    • A Busy Year, Knopf Books

    Lois Ehlert

    • Snowballs, Harcourt Snowballs by Lois Ehlert 
    • Market Day, Harcourt
    • Planting a Rainbow, Harcourt
    • In My World, Harcourt

    Ezra Jack Keats

    • The Snowy Day, Puffin
    • Peter's Chair, Red Fox
    • Pet Show, Scholastic
    • Letter to Amy, Harper & Row

    Bryan Collier

    • Rosa, Square Fish
    • Uptown, Live Oak Media
    • Martin's Big Words, Hyperian Book CH
    • Visiting Langston, Henry Holt and Co

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    The Process

    Let Students Create Their Own Torn Paper Collage! Collage is an art form in which the artist chooses, gathers and affixes materials to a background. The bits and pieces of paper, fabric and other materials are often layered to complete the effect. Collages are a great way to use recycled items! Students can use scraps of classroom worksheets, newspaper, wrapping paper, greeting cards, cardboard cereal boxes, wallpaper, grocery bags, tissue paper, letters, and fabric - just about anything!

    For the snowman crafts project shown in the picture, students were encouraged to use pieces of scrap paper to create a snowman scene. While these children chose a more traditional route (using white for the snow and snowman, orange for a nose and so forth) you might want to encourage your students to choose non-traditional colors or images for their snowman craft. This snowman craft project can easily be adapted for use during any of the holidays, or for any theme you are studying - dinosaurs, insects, Native American housing, etc.

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    More Examples of Torn Paper Collage

    For more examples of artwork created using the torn paper collage technique, visit the website and blogs of Eileen Downes. Ms. Downes is known as the "artist who 'paints' with bits of torn paper for a palette."

    These snowman crafts for kids are sure to be an inspiration to others. Why not send a few off to your favorite torn paper collage artist as a "thank you" for their inspiration!