Totally Tubular: Creative expression on a tube

I recently had a parent donate a paper roll dispenser to my class and so we have been having some fun exploring different ways we can use our paper roll dispenser, besides just dispensing paper.  Over the past few weeks we have been going totally tubular and placing different sizes of tubes on our dispenser for a little creative expression through painting, drawing and writing…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

For painting, we put two of our tube blocks on the paper roll dispenser and set out some paint for the children to explore. The children enjoyed painting all around the tubes and turning the tubes as they went along….

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

Because there were two tubes and two sets of paints, most of the children explored the totally tubular center with a friend.  What a great way to promote creativity, conversation, and collaboration!..

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

And as a reminder, you can read more about the tubes that we are painting on in my previous post titled, “Building and playing with our free tube blocks and where you can find them too“…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

Not only did we do a little tube painting, but we also tried a little tube drawing only for the drawing tube, we used an oatmeal container covered with paper…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

The oatmeal tube gave our students a larger canvas to work with.  As each child finished drawing, we either removed the paper and added a new one to the oatmeal container or we covered the drawing with a new sheet of paper or we left it and others would come and add to the drawing that was already there.  We let the children tell us what they preferred to do as we went along throughout the day…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

Some of the children preferred to work alone on the drawing tube and others preferred to draw with a friend…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

Instead of changing the tube, this time we kept the oatmeal container and changed out the paper from white drawing paper to black construction paper…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

The children used white chalk to draw on the black construction paper…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

No question that the tubular painting was the biggest favorite of the children overall but each new tube, process, and writing tool has provided its own type of interesting experience along the way…

Totally Tubular by Teach Preschool

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By |2013-01-17T01:42:47+00:00January 17th, 2013|

About the Author:

Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. has been working and teaching in the field of early childhood education for over 30 years. Deborah currently owns and teaches in her own part-time, private preschool called The Children’s Studio. Deborah’s deep passion for teaching and working with young children is documented and then graciously shared with millions of readers around the world through her blog and other social networking communities. Deborah believes that young children learn best through play and exploration and embraces this belief in all that she does in her own classroom so that she can effectively and passionately share rewarding, real- life, tried-and-true practices with other teachers, parents, and leaders across the field of early childhood education.


  1. Melinda January 17, 2013 at 7:59 am - Reply

    OH! I am doing this….today!!

  2. Mary January 17, 2013 at 10:24 am - Reply

    Another Great Activity, and shows how creative you’re. I’ve also used Paper Towel Tubes, Bathroom Paper Tubes, and other unwanted tubes to make Napkins Rings, storing Art Work done on paper, or canvas, using two tubes, one up and one down and paste a flyer, drawing, etc, to look as a scroll display for hanging. Thank you for always sharing so much on Children’s Activities. I also nominated you for a Blog of the year AWARD. Kindly visit my blog, and view my Award Category for your nomination.

  3. Penny January 18, 2013 at 6:17 am - Reply

    I love the idea of drawing and painting on something other than a flat surface. Fantastic!

  4. Scott January 18, 2013 at 8:35 pm - Reply

    Love the use of the paper dispenser, Deborah. As always…genius!

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