Make a Bean Collage


Count, sort and create! Using various beans create an abstract bean collage or a picture of animals, flowers. Make shapes, letters and animals. Could be an art activity for a plant unit as well.
Make a cute bean collage.

Materials for Bean Collage

  • 1 Bag of Soup beans will easily cover 6 children or more. See below for the type we buy. I find these at Walmart for just a few dollars. For large groups you might want to buy a bag of each type of bean that you want to use. Some beans we suggest are
      Black Beans
      Black Eyed Peas
      Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)
      Great Northern
      Kidney Beans
  • Small Dishes or paper plates for Beans
  • Oaktag or Cardboard
  • Craft Glue (dries stronger, faster) much easier to set beans in place.
  • Q-tips for individual placement of beans
  • Small sponge brush to apply glue in areas where beans will be randomly placed.
Plan your collage.


  • Read a book if you are doing this as an activity. We have a few suggestions below.
  • Sort and Count beans if you'd like to add that as part of the activity.
  • Discuss size and color and shape of beans. Talk about what bean would be good to use for the ground, animal or object you are making.
  • Draw with pencil lightly a sketch of what you would like your bean collage to look like.
  • Plan a picture on a workspace and then glue beans onto the cardboard.

Tips and Suggestions

  • Plan your picture before you start gluing. It will help to decide on the size of board you need as well as to consider how it will look when finished.
  • For small beans we brushed on small areas of glue in a thick layer and then sprinkled the beans.
  • Print out pictures of a book if you are using the story to generate pictures.
Brush an area with glue and sprinkle beans over it.

Other Ideas

  • Make simple patterns with the beans. Provide a lined piece of cardboard with rows for them to glue their patterns on it. Or print a sheet with basic shapes outlined on it.
  • Write their first name on a piece of cardboard and have them glue on beans to form the letters.
  • Print a page with different shapes and glue beans on the edges of the shape to create and outline and reinforce shape recognition.
  • Make a simple outline of a picture for younger children and have them glue on the beans to decorate.