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Storytime & Artmaking: Tar Beach

Children and their caregivers will hear the story Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold and create a hands-on art activity based on the book. This activity is geared toward children aged 3–6, but all are welcome!

Cover of Tar Beach

Getting Started

  • Where would you go if you could fly to any special place? 
  • Who would you bring with you?  
  • What patterns make you think of home?


  • Pencil 
  • Markers, color pencils, and/or crayons  
  • Scissors  
  • Glue 
  • Paper (2–4 sheets)  
  • Ruler (optional)

Artmaking Activity

1. Use pencil to draw a border and squares. You can use a ruler if you want straight lines.

2. In the squares, draw patterns or designs.

3. Color in your patterns or designs.

4. On a separate piece of paper, draw places that have special meaning for you. 

5. Cut out your special places.

6. Glue your cut-out special places in the empty space on your other sheet of paper.

7. Draw yourself flying above the landscape!


Collage: Art made by cutting up materials such as paper, fabric, and/or newspaper and then gluing them together to make a picture. 

Composition: The placement of visual elements like a layout

Landscape: a painting or drawing whose primary focus is scenery, such as mountains, forests, buildings, etc.  

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