Manipulating Tape


Tape is a material we put on our shelves for the children to use.  They are allowed to manipulate and play freely with it, in order to help learning, and their developmental growth.

One of the children was sitting quietly by herself one day, cutting and placing the tape on a display in the classroom.  She has proudly mastered the material, and was carefully placing the pieces she cut over the words on the display…………


This sparked the interest of some of her classmates.  Some pulled up chairs, some grabbed the same materials she had, and some came to the teachers asking for help.  The Reggio Emilia philosophy believes in allowing the children to experience obstacles and finding ways to over come them.  So, when the children asked the teachers for help, we encouraged them to ask the student who was initially placing the tape on the display.  Having the children work together encourages them to problem solve, and work together.  It also strengthens their communication and socialization skills.

She was more than willing to help!  She pulled out the tape for them, and helped them cut.  She even asked them where they wanted it and helped them place it on the wall.

It didn’t take long before the children took off on their own to manipulate the tape…..

She tried hard to get the tape to stick to the chalk board, but it just wouldn’t stay….

She came back with the other children to observe…..

The team work was successful, and the green tape joined the other pieces on the wall……

With more experience, she was ready to tackle the tape on her own again!  What determination ;0)

Okay, hmmmm, are these the scissors I should use?

No, not the green ones…… it the red ones???

Ah!  She made a swap, and got the scissors that the girls were using to cut the other pieces of tape!


Now!  Back to work!!!

If at first I don’t succeed…..try and try again!

Yes!  Sweet Success!  The tape was cut, now to get it on the wall……

She twisted and turned the tape, finding the sticky side, and successfully sticking it to the wall!

Now it was her turn.  She got the tape to stick, and each time it fell she put it back, making sure to pat it and press it down good….

She never gave up, each time it fell, she tried again.

Several times she pulled out a new piece, ripping off the piece that didn’t work. (not realizing that it had to to with the tape still being attached to roll ;0)

The evidence of her hard work was all over the floor!

Behind her, was our little “L”, cutting away!  She found the perfect scissors as well as the perfect color tape!

And now, she is becoming a master tape artist!  She is picking up her speed cutting and turning the tape so that it sticks to the paper!

So proud of these little fingers.  Not only did they learn to apply the tape successfully, but some of them even made decisions on whether the tape should be horizontal or vertical in order to cover the words.

They were so engaged in this project.  They never got upset, they just carried on trying over and over again, problem solving as they went.

Always trying new scissors or a new color of tape if they were not successful.

In the end, she came up with a new way to display her tape.  She cut pieces and placed them all over these magnetic boards.  She was unique in her own way of using the tape, and we believe that children deserve the opportunity to be creative.

Our other little friend, had sweet victory whet at last she was able to cut a teeny, tiny, little piece of tape and get it to stick on the paper!

can you see it???  ;0)

Our final two masterpieces are shown below……..

So much time was spent on the children working with this material.  The children are given the time they need and the freedom to explore materials.  There is so much value in each material that is put in our classrooms.  Every material provides an opportunity to strengthen their developmental skills.

Tape provides the following for the children:

Fine Motor Skills: these skills are strengthened as the children learn to tear, pull, stick and manipulate the tape.

Critical Thinking:  these skills are challenged as they try to figure out how they will keep the tape where they want it, how to not let it stick to itself or themselves, how to manipulate a short piece versus a long piece.

Eye-Hand Coordination:  these skills are strengthened as they apply the tape successfully to the surface that they want.

Mathematical Thinking:  these skills are challenged as the children determine the length of tape needed to accomplish their goal.

Creative Skills:  these skills are fostered as the children use the tape to create different things.

Social Skills:  these skills are strengthened as the children collaborate, communicate, and work together to make their creations, stick tape on surfaces, or cut pieces of tape.

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