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64  chapter 3 COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL even add a layer or two of paint to the sculpture or add other items that interest them. Placing the sculpture on a tray covered with a layer of wax pa- per is a good way to store the project and continue the work each day. If trays are not available, cut cardboard also could be used. Learning to use scissors The Progression Stages of Using Scissors preference of mine never to use pointed-tip scissors in my classroom. The pointed-​tip scissors can be dangerous and could lead to the child cutting his skin, poking his eye, or injuring the child beside him. Using scissors builds fine-muscle strength and develops pre-writing skills and fine-motor skills. In addition, I have found that having “cutting bins” full of scrap paper, strips of paper, crepe paper, strips of wallpaper samples, and so on available to children who need focus or as an activity for a short period of time works great. Teaching two- and three-year-olds to use scissors is easier than you might think, for children typi- cally learn to use them successfully in no time at all. The learning is a simple progression that begins with playdough and playdough scissors. Once the child understands how to cut playdough with the playdough scissors, move to cutting paper with the playdough scissors; they are sharp enough to cut paper but not sharp enough to cut hair or the child’s fingers. Once you’ve helped the child learn to manipulate the playdough scissors and coordi- nate his fingers properly, you can switch to safety scissors, which are a little sharper. Finally, you can bring out the rounded-tip scissors. It is a personal Step one: Playdough with playdough scissors Simple woodworking COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL