Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

Hi everyone! Sue from Puppyjawns.com here, sharing a little project we recently got into at our pre-Kindergarten art studio.

We’ve been really lucky to be involved in a mail-based print swap with the students from a special needs school in another state. Through this collaboration, we’ve shared stories about our schools and the different places we live - my kids live in the city and those kids live at the beach. We call them our “Beach Friends”. Through participating in this exchange, my students have become totally enamored with the idea of mail!

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

I decided to set up a small scale mail delivery system in our studio for the kids to explore!

Along with lots of imaginative accoutrement, we used:

Ellison SuperStar Machine
Envelope Die
Construction paper and cardstock cut to 6" x 4.5” (for envelopes)
Additional construction paper or typing paper for letters and cards
Markers
Tape & glue
Box, box cutter, materials for decorating mailbox

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

Before my students came in for the day, I cut two holes in a cardboard box - a little slot for receiving mail, and a hatch in the back - large enough for small hands to retrieve all the mail. I used a box cutter and freestyled the location and sizes of the holes. Any kind of box would work for this project - I went on the smaller size as storage is ALWAYS an issue in my room.

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

The kids were invited to decorate the box with oil pastels, markers, and our art room favorite, colored tape.

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

I showed the students how we die cut envelopes using the SuperStar machine. It’s the first time they’ve seen the machine in action, and they were wowed. Letting them help with the cutting process really gave them ownership of their mail! I showed them how to fold the envelopes on the perforated lines, and close them up with glue or tape.

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

As they worked, we talked about who we would send mail to, and what we could put inside.

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

Our mail was decorated, sealed up, and slid into the mailbox, where other students would play mailman and distribute to eager citizens.

Going Postal: Artful Mail Play!

I really liked this project because it encouraged dramatic play, helped with fine motor skills while assembling those tiny envelopes AND will be a project we can revisit at various times throughout the year!

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