Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Finger-painting Fun!

When Ben and Tamara were little (like, baby little), I did a lot of painting with them... Well, okay, I did a lot of painting on them. See, I was determined that I was going to collect years worth of home-made hand and footprints of each child, to keep, frame, or even scrapbook, to show/give to them when they're older so we can all say "Aww, look how little your feet were!" and then have a cry because they were all grown up now...

It lasted about a year. After that, they were too old to be completely co-operative (when they wanted to do the painting instead of me), and too heavy to hold like a football or like a straight jacket while I painted their feet (individually, in 6 different colours*), and so I just gave up. It was fun while it lasted**, but became too complicated to manage regularly, and time kept slipping away until it wasn't even a thought in my mind.

* Thinking about it now, I was definitely crazy.

** Not that I can remember.

I don't remember the last time I let my children be within reaching distance of paint at home, and to be completely honest, it's one of the reasons I loved them going to preschool. All those fine motor, messy learning experiences that I much prefer don't happen inside my home.

Well, after seeing various images and links to "mess-free painting" pop up through my Facebook news feed recently; today, I trialled it for the activity at my local play group.

There's many websites and blogs I've found with posts about it (so yes, I am now officially yet another one), which means I'm not sure where the original idea came from; but, it's GENIUS!

Basically, I put/placed/poured/squirted/blobbed a large dollop of paint into snap lock bags (of all the colours I had), gently squeezed the air out, and sealed them...

Taped the bag onto white paper (for a better background contrast)...

Blu-tac'd them to the table, and the kids started "painting"!

Of course, it works best if the bags aren't opened for paint to come out (some boys really love being messy!), and, if they're secured properly on the table (or ground, or window, or wall). I found that paper was just a bit too thin and kept bunching up when kids 'painted' firmly. Cardboard would have worked much better I think! Or a bigger bit of blu-tac...

What I plan to do with Jonathan (you know, eventually... maybe) is set him up with this, and get him to draw letters into the paint, prompting him with giant letter flash cards I had bought him recently. I think we've looked at them once. Oops.

It's comforting, though, knowing that even my 10 year old was pretty entertained by this craft! So I still have time with my forgotten-third-child.

And considering the school holidays are coming up in just a couple of weeks, here's some more great kids painting ideas that I've found from Livin' the Mom Life!

Mess-free painting FTW!

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