Toronto Zoo

Art tools for toddlers

Crayola outgrew its crayon stage years ago, coming up with countless products that appeal to the imagination and creativity of children. Just so kids don’t have to wait to grow into all that Crayola has to offer, a new line for toddlers, ages 18 to 36 months, brings them into the fold. There are five new art tools in the collection that will be available in stores in September. Designed with little hands and fledgling skills in mind. they look like those egg-shaped toys that wobble but won’t fall over. And stability is one of the features of TaDoodles Washable First Marks and TaDoodles Washable All-In-One Paint (both $6.99) from Crayola Beginnings. There are no caps, no small parts that can pose a hazard and the ink is "the worlds’ most washable". The markers and paints dry out between uses and become moist again the next time your toddler has the urge to create a piece of art. Also part of the Beginnings line is the First Marks BUV, a utility vehicle that can transport and store six of the art tools ($12.99). Another Beginnings offering is Creativity Central, a two-sided easel. One side is a soft, squishy gel surface that simulates fingerpainting. without the mess, the flip side of the easel is a colourful “water writer” surface. Apply water with the special tool and a rainbow of colours is revealed. Wet fingers achieve great results on the white surface as well. ($21.99). And finally, a redesigned crayon that fits the grip of a 2-year-old. Washable Triangular crayons are the right shape to help guide fingers into the tripod position for more controlled drawing. ($3.48)