Jan 19, 2013

Toddler Art Class: Holiday paintbrushes


Who needs paintbrushes when we've got these seasonal tools to try?

[Oops!  This was supposed to be published in December when we DID this class, but I pressed the wrong button and only discovered that this week.  Please excuse the untimely posting!]

Art Project: Painting with Bells, Branches & Pinecones
large sheets of construction paper
paper box lids (the kind that are basically a deep tray)
jingle bells (in a variety of sizes)
a variety of evergreen branches

Book:  Jingle bells / by Grace Lin  

 What Kids Do: 
dunk jingle bells in paint, then roll them around on their paper (by tipping the box or pushing with a popsicle stick) inspired by this post

 dip the pinecones into paint, then use the pinecone like a stamp.
 or just stamp their hand with the pinecone....
 and then attempt to monoprint that stamp back onto the paper!
 or just give up on these alternative "brushes" and use fingers instead, much more efficient!
 greenery can be used almost like a real brush,

 or can be pressed down like a stamp!

Hindsight Tip: --I also offered large paper (from a roll) that kids could decorate for gift wrap if desired.  My original intent was that each participant would use a different sheet of paper for each different brush technique (and paint color), but everyone just put them all on the same sheet and it looked great!  There wasn't so much paint on the page that the red and green mixed to make brown and it was fun to see all the patterns criss-crossing in a mish-mash across the page.

 Variations to try: 
--there are so many different things that could be used as a brush if you start to brainstorm alternatives.  Just look around your house (and yard and garage...) and see what you think might make an interesting texture or pattern.

Adult Challenge:  Don't tell your child their artwork is pretty.  Instead, talk with them about their experience creating art, or talk in general terms about the painting itself (Oooh, look at this great use of negative space!  I see you're going for minimalism today.  What strong vertical motion this painting portrays!).  This one is the hardest challenge of all!

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