Art projects are my favourite activity to do with the children as you never know what their little imagination can come up with.
I have a few tips for making regular painting more interesting and then I’ll share some of my favourite activities that I like to do in the summer.
Tip #1: Switch up the utensil in which your child is painting with. Using a brush can get boring after a while so I like to throw in different household items that make the project they are creating a little more unique.
For example, household items that would work include:
Food (potatoes are surprisingly effective when painting)
Their own hands (usually a favourite I might add)
Tip #2: switch up the location in which they are creating
Some areas that I find are great for doing art projects include:
The floor: have them lay on their bellies while colouring a large piece of paper
The window: cover an entire section of the window that they can reach with paper and let them create (supervised of course or you might have your wall coloured too)
OUTSIDE: you may soon realize as I give you more art projects to do that I will always suggest doing them outside. The reason for this is simple, EASY CLEAN UP. Another beneficial reason is that it is also getting close to summer time and vitamin D is so important for a growing child.
Tip #3: Do the art project with them, but don't do it for them.
A child will be entertained for hours if they can sit next to you and create as well. They are also surprisingly interested in seeing what you create.
1. Painting with ice cubes (infants and toddlers)
Super simple and easy to make project for your little one. All that is needed is an ice tray, food colouring, and a canvas of choice. First, fill the ice tray with water and then add a few drops of food colouring to each square. You can use as many or as little colours as you want. After the ice is frozen you can take the cubes out and use the blocks as painters. As they melt they shed colour onto a surface. Paper works as a canvas to a certain degree, but if it’s a beautiful day I recommend going out onto your deck or sidewalk and letting them ‘paint’ that. Don’t worry the paint washes off with water!
2. Painting with bubbles! (toddler age)
This one is super fun but a little messy (but the best art projects always are). The supplies needed include: bubbles, a bubble stick, a muffin tin, a big sheet of paper, and an imagination ready to create. I would recommend doing this activity outside maybe on the grass as there is more room to create. Prep time is a maximum of 10 minutes as all that is needed to do is to put bubble mix and food colouring in a muffin tin (maybe use an old one that you don’t care about) and then have your child dip the bubble stick into the mixture and blow onto a sheet of paper.
3. Coffee filter Butterflies (Toddler and up)
I love this one because it doesn’t matter how you do it it will always turn out beautiful.
The supplies needed for this includes: coffee filters, markers, pipe cleaners or a clothes pin, and a spray bottle filled with water. First fold the coffee filter so that it ends up in a triangle (as shown above). Then have your child colour it as best as they can and in as many colours as they can (preferably no white spots). When they are finished spray it with a spray bottle so that the filter is damp (not soaking). Next unfold the filter and set it up somewhere to dry. It is best to put it on top of a towel or something because the colour will leak through slightly. Once the filter is dry, pinch the top and the bottom together so that they meet in the middle but the sides are sticking out like wings. Then fasten the middle with a clothes pin or a pipe cleaner and voila you have a butterfly! You can add special details after like eyes or a smile after, and they look just beautiful hanging on a wall.
4. Glued Frog Picture (Infant-Toddler)
This cute little frog is a fun art project and good fine motor practice for your toddler. To start, you will need a print out of a frog, or a drawing if you have better artistic talent than I. Next you will need to either cut up small pieces of green construction paper or green tissue paper. Then you can give your toddler a small glue stick and let them glue the paper onto the frog.