Tin Foil Process Art OR….Create a Stanley Cup!

stanley cup

My son has been talking about making a Stanley Cup for his upcoming hockey themed birthday party. The daycare children declared they wanted to make a Stanley Cup too so I bought a roll of tin foil specifically for our craft the next day. I planned to give the older kids the materials for a cup and the younger ones materials for a process art activity.

‘Process Art’ is a creative activity where the learning takes place, at the child’s pace, during the process of exploring the medium at the child’s pace.  Each child will follow their own lead and interact with the materials in a way that makes sense to them.  Most often, there is no distinguishable product at the end of the activity. Most toddlers and preschoolers love process art because there are no rules.  Just free exploration and fun! Older children (and adults) love process art as well.  Being creative with different materials without any expectation to produce an end project is very freeing.  It’s a great way to de-stress for many older children.

Luckily, we had an assortment of containers around the house and in the recycle bin to stack together to resemble the cup for the group who was keen on making a Stanley Cup replica.


The children in my house LOVE tape.  The older ones had great fun using packing tape to tape together the containers. My little ones did not want their container towers taped together.  They enjoyed discovering how high they could stack different combinations and then they knocked them down.  One child wanted to measure how high the tower was compared to his feet, his legs, his belly and his head.  It turned into a math learning opportunity in measurement!


Once the towers were taped together, they added the tin foil.  I helped them wrap it around the bottom and secure the end with a little bit more packing tape.


They kept wrapping it higher and higher.  Smoothing out the foil in places and adding little ridges in places.


The younger children wrapped foil over different containers to see how it stuck and how they could mold it.  Tin foil is a marvelous substance.  It’s shiny and makes a great sound when scrunched.  It’s easy to rip and tear apart.  Plus, you can sculpt it and keep sticking more onto your creation. It was a hit with the preschoolers.


The kids discovered it was light and thin when flat but it was easy to roll into little balls.


The older group kept working until they had covered all the containers with foil.


And the winner is…….everyone!  A bunch of happy children, one big trophy, and a happy caregiver who had very little mess to tidy up.  That’s my kind of art activity!