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Primary school art and design lessons are a vital part of the KS1 and KS2 curriculum, not only providing a creative outlet for students but also teaching them a range of important skills such as independent play and the development of their fine motor skills.

In order to best deliver these activities, there are a number of primary school supplies that are considered art and design essentials for KS1 and KS2.   


Glue is without a doubt one of the essentials classroom supplies for primary school, going far beyond art and design activities when it comes to its many uses. You’ll be hard pressed to find many art and design activities that don’t require some form of glue at one stage or another.

Of course, not all types of glue are created equal. While some projects might require the use of a glue gun, for other art and design activities you’ll want to let your students get creative with some glitter glue.

It’s good to always keep your classroom stocked up with a variety of glues such as glitter glue, sellotape, and non-toxic glue that will be safe for young children to use.    


Yet another staple of primary school classrooms, paint – much like glue – is a vital art and design resource. A simple way to infuse some fun and cheery into any art or design lesson, paints allow young learners to really express themselves in a creative way while practising their hand-eye coordination.

For primary schools, non-toxic paints are a must-have, and can now be sourced in a number of different forms. Powder paints are always a favourite for art and craft activities despite their messiness as they are a good way of minimising any waste and avoiding paints drying out when not in use.

If you’re looking for a paint medium that offers ease of use, then ready mixed paints will be the perfect match for any art and design project, often coming in large classroom-sized containers for easy ordering and storage. Other types of paint essential for primary schools includes paint blocks, paint sticks, ink pads, and watercolours.    

Craft Paper

Craft paper is a wonderfully diverse art and design resource, supporting hands-on activities suitable for a range of ages. From origami to decoupage, colourful craft paper is always a firm-favourite for art and design activities.

Available in a myriad of colours and finishes, craft paper is easy to use, making it accessible even for children with special educational needs and is far less messy to clear up than some other primary school favourites like paint or glitter glue.      

Modelling Materials

Suitable for use across the entire primary school age range, modelling materials are a classroom essential not only because of the tactile learning opportunity they provide but also because of their role in supporting the development of fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.

Traditionally, modelling supplies in primary school extended only to clay and soft dough, however now there is a far more diverse range of art and design modelling materials that can be put to good use in a classroom setting.

While non-toxic clay is still the modelling material of choice for young learners and KS1 art and design classes, it’s worth invest in a more diverse range which includes kinetic sand, plaster of Paris, play foam, and modelAiR.    

Aprons and Covers

No primary school classroom should ever be without the essential resourced needed to support art and design activities – aprons and table covers. Every primary school teacher knows that the more fun an art and design activity is, the more mess it is likely to create. With this in mind, some PVC aprons or popovers and table covers are as essential as paper and paint when it comes to primary school art and design activities.   

Protecting your classroom and children’s clothes from any unfortunate accidents or overenthusiastic involvement in art and design activities.  

*This is a collaborative post*