PLAY IDEA: Painting With Toddlers


Painting is a great play activity for children of all ages. It is a way for children to be creative using different colours and textures of paint and to showcase their feelings through art. It is important for us (parents) to support and let our children paint their own way. Here are some ideas, tips and tricks for you to consider when "Painting With Toddlers"

There are so many benefits to painting, especially with toddlers. It helps children to develop hand, eye, arm and body coordination, also developing their finger and hand muscles. Children are able to experiment with colour and texture, and using this to express themselves. 

We (parents) can support our children by talking to them about their art work, naming and dating their work, display it proudly in our homes, and provide opportunities to paint on different surfaces, including their hands.

You can either set up a painting area on a table or if you have one, an easel. Put some non-toxic paint (or make your own) in some small containers, add paper and your toddler is good to go! Have an apron, paint smock or an old t-shirt available for your tot to wear over his or her clothes, because this activity can get quite messy, very quickly, especially in the hands of toddlers. 

Using an old egg carton as a paint tray is such a brilliant idea, because your toddler doesn't need a lot of paint, it's easily accessible, and clean up will be a breeze - once your little one has finished their 'masterpiece',  pop the tray in a plastic bag and throw it in the rubbish. 

Here are some ideas you might like to try, with your toddler, the next time you explore painting...
  • Try using different textures in a range of sizes and colours e.g. paper, cardboard, fabric, wallpaper to paint on. Also other surfaces such as fences, stones and wood off cuts might interest your child. 
  • Use a range of paints such as powder, puffy, poster, acrylic, watercolour, dye, oil paints or natural products such as watered down clay. 
  • Have a range of bright clean colours and shades to choose from 
  • Use different painting tools such as brushes, sponges, rollers, leaves, cotton balls, fly swats

Does your toddler love to paint? Do you have any ideas, tips and tricks about 'Painting With Toddlers' that might help others? Leave a comment below. 

Charlene
    Painting at an easel
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20 comments

  1. Painting and messy are all high on my list at home and as a teacher . Fantastic photos and great post x

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    1. Thank you so much Jules. In the beginning, my son wasn't really a fan of messy play, however as he gets older, he is getting used to it and loving it! Happy Child, Happy Mum :)

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  2. I love that egg carton idea, I'd never thought to do that! My girls just turned 1 and we'll be painting very soon, it looks like so much fun :)

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    1. I love the egg carton idea too! Ooh you and your girls are going to have so much fun painting. I have shared some other play ideas too (links are above). Thanks for stopping by Lu.

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  3. The egg carton idea is just genius! When I was teaching, I used to love it when the kids painted on wallpaper because you can make the canvas as big or as small as you like! I love the finished result, the cleaning up, not so much! Thanks for linking up with the Ultimate Rabbit Hole x

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    1. Might have to get my partner to bring some sample wallpaper rolls home from work (he works in a paint shop :)) Great idea. Thanks for stopping by Sammie

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  4. I love messy painting...when it is outside :)

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  5. I've come to visit via #BlogFair Link Party, such a great idea to use egg cartons as a paint tray. My first is about to turn one and I'm nervous about embracing messy play soon, but this looks like a lot of fun. Great idea in previous comment about using wallpaper for painting and drawing, we have a few rolls going to waste in the garage!

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    1. Perfect!! You and your toddler are going to having so much 'messy' fun! Enjoy :)

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  6. My toddler loves painting too. We had a fun session outside where I let her paint her baby brother and herself with finger paint, they had a blast and enjoyed the tub cleanup session afterwards too.

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    1. That sounds like a lot of fun! Finger paint is great!! Have you seen my Finger paint post? http://www.teacherbytrademotherbynature.com/2015/08/play-idea-finger-painting.html

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  7. Love this post! So fun to let toddlers explore creativity by getting messy!

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  8. Painting is one of those activities that I cringe about and try to avoid, purely because of the messy factor. But once we are actually engaged in it, we all have a great time, even me! I think I just need to get over myself, hahaha.

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    1. I was the same MrsW...didn't want to mess anything up, but now I have seen how much fun my kids have and who I am to take that away from them! Embrace messy play!

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  9. Love these tips and tricks for painting Charlene.
    My tip is if you don't have a egg carton use an old or cheap (for painting only) muffin tin. Works a charm and cleaning up is a breeze. I also have a cookie tray and use that sometimes too, just for something different :-) xx

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    1. Great tips Lydia! Thank you for sharing. I have used old muffin trays before...it's great because you can find them quite cheap at op-shops.

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  10. My kids love painting. My view is that you should just embrace the mess and let them have fun!

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  11. Great tips! I love the egg carton too. Your little guy is so sweet - I love his look of concentration.

    We did a lot of painting with the toddlers strapped into their hard plastic booster seats at the kitchen table. Thanks for sharing with #made4kids this week.

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