Seashell Ladybug Craft | Still Playing School

Seashell Ladybug Craft

We love colorful crafts for kids! We dyed seashells rainbow colors to make ladybugs. They are the perfect loose parts for play and learning!

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There are so many ways to learn and play with ladybugs that we decided to make our own manipulatives using what we already had at home. Seashells are the perfect ladybug shape!

The first step of this ladybug craft is to dye the shells with liquid watercolors. We used eye droppers to paint our shells to practice our fine motor skills. You could also paint liquid watercolors on to the shells. 

The porous surface of the shells absorbs the color. Allow the shells to dry well. We left ours outside in the sun. 

You could play and learn many ways with these colorful shells at this point. Can you imagine leaving one of the rainbow ones for others to find on the beach? So pretty!

We weren't finished yet, though! We wanted to make ladybugs! Once the shells were dry I used a Sharpie marker to draw on a head, divide the body, and add spots. 

I always get so excited when an activity is a hit with our kids! They couldn't keep their hands off of these bugs! I put them on one of our play and learn trays without prompting anything.

Summer Preschool Theme

Our preschooler immediately was leading her toddler brother in may ways. She sorted by color, then put them together in rainbow order. She asked him to help her match large and small ladybugs of the same color. She counted spots and discussed more, less, and equal. These are going to be a favorite for loose play learning all summer long!

More Ladybug Ideas from the Playful Preschool Team:

Ladybug Prepositions Play by Rainy Day Mum

Ladybug Letter Spots by Growing Book by Book

Ladybug Science Experiment by The Educators' Spin On It

3 Part Ladybug Counting by Tiny Tots Adventures

Ladybug Roll and Cover Math Game by Mom Inspired Life

Ladybug Garden Rocks by Powerful Mothering

Cupcake Liner Ladybug  by Fun-A-Day!

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  1. So cute - we made ours with stones but these would work just as well for our activity this week.

  2. This is a fantastic idea! They look so inviting, so I am not surprised that your kids couldn't keep their hands off of them!

  3. What gorgeous colors you got! I so wish we had some shells!

  4. The colors are so vibrant! I love that you used an eye dropper to paint the shells. They turned out super cute!

  5. I would have never thought to use seashells for ladybugs. Very clever!

  6. These are super cute and the colors are so pretty!

  7. Love the bright colors, especially the rainbow one!
    What a great use for shells!

  8. I'm so glad I found this before summer's end! We have several shells to craft with. Great post!

  9. How long do the shells take to dry with the watercolour coat?