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Shoebox Art Centers


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Creating an Art Project that Fits Into a Shoebox
Shoebox Art Centers

Shoebox centers can store all the items for art projects your students can do independently.


Students with disabilities, like typical children, love to create art projects. Learning centers can provide students with disabilities opportunities to read and follow directions, a variety of tasks that do not involve writing on paper, while keeping them busy so you can attend to assessment, small group and individual instruction, or just catching up with some paper work. Once again, it supports fine motor skills.

Shoebox art centers are art activities that can fit into a shoebox: I use the inexpensive sealable containers you can purchase at big box discount stores. You could use real shoe boxes, though they are seldom uniform in size.

Creating the Project

I will be providing projects for your shoe boxes, or you can create your own. A good project is one that you can put all the elements into the shoe box. I will also include step by step directions with illustrations. The purpose is not only to give students a break from repetitive "academic" tasks, but also to give them practice in reading and following directions. If you use "foam noodles," you can keep a quart zippered storage bag full for your students.

When your box is full, keep it on a shelf until it is time for learning centers. If your students will be mounting it on construction paper, you can store the paper in a magazine/file box on the shelf and put it out on the desk or table you will be using.

To make your directions more durable, run the pdf's on card stock and laminate them. I created them to be 5 1/2 inches by 8 1/2 inches so they will fit in your shoebox. Other items, like pipe cleaners, tissues or other items, can go into plastic zippered quart sized or sandwich size bags.

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