Guys, I learned from Pinterest business hub that pencil shaving art for kids is going to be a huge trend in 2021. What?! I had never even heard of that idea. I decided to have Turkey Burger give it a try, because she’s always looking for boredom busters. She had SO MUCH FUN.

This post is all about how to get started with pencil shaving art for kids. Hopefully your small people love it! If you enjoy this post, would ya share it on social media for me? 

Here’s part of what makes this activity so awesome: you need practically nothing. If you’ve got small people under your roof, you probably already have this stuff. Yay!


  • Paper
  • Colored Pencils
  • Handheld pencil sharpener
  • Glue stick
pencil shaving art supplies needed

How to Do Pencil Shaving Art for Kids

This really doesn’t require much explanation because it’s so easy! I did find that my 6 year old needed a few tips.

Have them draw the outline of their shape. Look at other people’s ideas for inspiration. You just need to draw something that works well with pencil shavings: think ruffles, fish scales, hair, etc.

Choose your colors and pencils.

Begin sharpening pencils. Experiment with different pressures and angles as you sharpen to see what produces the best shavings.

Glue stick your shape, and don’t worry about getting an exact line. After all, glue sticks dry clear. Only glue a small amount at a time.

Show your kid how to layer the shavings so that you don’t have white spaces.

Last, color and decorate the rest of the picture with materials of your choosing.

beginning art project

Why Pencil Shaving Art for Kids is a Great Craft

This activity is really a wonderful way to entertain your kids! Here’s why.

It takes a while.

This activity takes a while because you’ve got to stop and sharpen pencils periodically. And of course, the fine motor activity of carefully placing the shavings onto the page adds to the length of time it takes to complete.

Longer activities = more time between clean up and longer stretches for Mama to check things off her to-do list. It’s a no-brainer.

It kills two birds with one stone. 

When the activity is done, BOOM you’ve also got sharpened pencils. It’s like you tricked your kid into taking care of their supplies.

pencil shaving art example

The creative options are endless. 

Check out all these ideas

It’s cheap and easy.

We already had all these supplies, and it’s not like I’m one of those crazy moms that has an entire room dedicated to crafting. See supply list above. Also, if you have an entire room dedicated to crafting, I’m not judging, I’m just jealous.

Pencil shaving art for kids scaffolds well for any age. 

This is a biggie. A five year old can probably do this independently, but I can imagine even super artistic teenagers having fun with this activity. Anytime you introduce a new material, creativity blooms. I’m not an artist, but that’s what I suspect.

Here, my six year old decided to do a flamenco dancer. She had seen a video at school of a flamenco dancer with castanets. Originally, she wanted to do a red dress,  but when she ran out of red shavings, she finished the top of the dress with orange. 

In case you’re wondering, she’s imagining that the dancer is on a stage. The sun is a stage prop, and it’s hanging from some sort of black rope. 

final project spanish dancer pencil shaving art

Looking for more pre-k and kinder fun?