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Packing Peanut Collage

Sweet Pea is 44 months old.

From: I do a lot of my Christmas shopping online and recently have been inundated with boxes full of packing peanuts.  Instead of just throwing them away, I let Sweet Pea make a collage with them.


  • Paper.
  • Styrofoam packing peanuts.
  • Washable white glue.  (We like the Crayola school glue.)
  • Bowl to contain the peanuts.


  • Put the packing peanuts in the bowl.
  • Put the paper, bowl of packing peanuts and glue in front of your tot.
  • Demonstrate how to hold the glue bottle upside down and squeeze a small amount of glue onto the paper.
  • Pick up a packing peanut and show your tot how to stick it to the fresh glue.
  • Let your tot try.

Observations: Sweet Pea had never used a glue bottle before, so I thought that this activity would keep her attention, but I was wrong.   She sort of enjoyed it, but only completed one sheet of paper before she was done.

She did like putting on and taking off the lid for the glue.  🙂

Next time, I would use a marker to draw a picture and have Sweet Pea  fill it in with the packing peanuts.   For example, if we get white packing peanuts, I am planning on drawing a snowman and letting her fill it in.  Sweet Pea loves snowmen, so I think this would be far more interesting for her.

Every tot is different, so you might want to give this a try if you have a bunch of packing peanuts around.  A younger tot might be satisfied with the just gluing the peanuts onto the paper.  However, the novelty would probably wear off quickly for an older tot if this isn’t part of a more structured craft.

Notes from the Trenches: Packing peanuts are oddly and annoyingly messy.  They have an electrostatic charge and are almost impossible to pick up, so you probably don’t want to just hand an entire box of them to your tot.

Sweet Pea had some trouble controlling herself with the glue bottle.  She liked watching it come out and I had to remind her “that’s enough” a couple of times.

Rating: 3 Stars * (Easy, Independent, Frugal)


2 comments to Packing Peanut Collage

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