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Nature Weaving on a Cardboard Loom | An Open-Ended Art Activity

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The natural world is full of color, light, texture, shape, line, sound, and movement, all of which are captivating to the young child. In Time to Create: Hands-On Explorations in Process Art for Young ChildrenChristie Burnett writes, “Helping children to find the beauty in nature; to see outdoor spaces as places of fun, inspiration and recreation; and to learn about the interconnectedness of all elements of the environment can act to spark a child’s nurturing spirit.” This open-ended art activity allows children to create and explore as they weave with gathered natural art materials. 


  • Natural materials found on your weaving hunt
  • Thick cardboard
  • Ruler and pencil
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Yarn or string

What to Do

To Make the Loom:

  1. Cut the piece of thick cardboard to the preferred size.
  2. Mark regular intervals along both the top and the bottom of the cardboard, being sure that the marks line up top and bottom. Smaller children will need widely spaced threads on their looms, but the threads can be placed closer together for older children.
  3. Make a small slit at each mark using scissors.
  4. Tape the end of a piece of yarn at the top left corner on the back of the cardboard, close to the first slit.
  5. Run the yarn through this first slit so that it now sits at the front of the loom.
  6. Bring the yarn down to and through the corresponding slit on the bottom edge of the cardboard.
  7. Bring the yarn forward through the second bottom slit, and then bring the yarn to the top second slit and push it through to the back.
  8. Continue in this manner, working up and down, until you reach the final slit. Finish with the yarn at the back of the loom and attach with tape to hold firm.

To Weave:

  1. Using the materials from her weaving hunt, encourage your child to create a woven masterpiece.

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