Spider Sculptures

Spider Sculptures

Location: indoor

Materials: play dough or clay

Inspired by Louise Bourgeois' spider sculptures, this is an activity that inspire new experiences with play dough.

To start you can read Amy Novesky's book, Cloth Lullaby, to introduce your children to the life and work of Louise Bourgeois. This is a longer book, so you may need to break it into multiple readings.

After reading you can invite your children to create spider sculptures like Louise Bourgeois did. This activity can result in close looking at pictures of Bourgeois' art-- what shapes do you see in spiders? how many legs do they have?

If your children really get into this you can move on from play dough to clay or other dough that will dry, so that they can keep their spider sculptures.

Mixed-Age Guide:

Infants may:

  • enjoy squishing and patting the play dough
  • want to observe other children working on this project
  • require closer observation with the play dough

Toddlers may:

  • want you to make shapes for them to manipulate, like making a ball for them to squish
  • may or may not be interested in creating a spider, may just want to explore the play dough

Preschoolers may:

  • independently create spiders out of play dough
  • require support in counting and creating the correct number of legs

What We're Learning

  • sensory exploration
  • finger and hand manipulation
  • hand-eye coordination
  • self-expression and creativity
  • one-to-one correspondence