Her first project was scribbling with coloured pencils on paper when she was just 18 months old. From there we moved onto Crayola's Pip-Squeak markers, Faber Castell's bucket of markers and crayons. Lots of colouring of pre-printed princesses and animals grew out of these wonderful products until Trini showed interest in painting. A whole new world opened to us and our art sessions kept pushing both our boundaries as we both learned and continue learning along the way.
There is no better time to expose children to the wonderful world of arts and crafts than toddlers. They are curious, don't mind getting their hands dirty, love their scribbles and are not judgmental about their imperfections (as a matter fact they believe that their artwork is perfect, which is brilliant for their confidence and sense of wonder).
However, this exposure requires a parent's dedication to spend time with the toddler, to guide them through the projects as opposed to leaving them to their own will. It could get messy but mostly it could create frustration if the child is unsure about what to do.
When Trini and I first began we had a handful of basic supplies that we could work with:
Crayola Washable Paints (10 pots) - non-toxic
|This pack of 10 retails for approx. SGD$16|
Brush sponges - get a few so you don't have to wash them so often when changing colours
|This pack of 5 retails for about SGD$6 from the Popular Bookstore|
Disposable paper plates
Potato - for stamping
Marshmallows - cylinder shaped for stamping (make sure there are extras for eating)
Project 1 - Cup Stamping
Using the paint pots, pour a dollop of the chosen colours on a disposable plate. Dip the rim of a disposable cup in a chosen colour and have your child randomly stamp the paper. Alternatively, stamp in an organised manner but that will require greater direction from the parent.
|Trini took charge by combining colours on the rim of the cup|
and using the opposite end to stamp inside the larger ring.
Project 2 - Sponge Rolling
Using the paint pots, pour a dollop of the chosen colours on a disposable plate. Using a different sponge roller for each colour (or if you only have one make sure you wash the sponge well between colours) roll the sponge in chosen colour and let your child roll randomly on the paper. Encourage your child to change colours regularly and keep rolling until the whole paper is filled.
Project 3 - Sponge Brushing
Using the paint pots, pour a dollop of the chosen colours on a disposable plate. Using a different sponge brush for each colour (or if you only have one make sure you wash the sponge well between colours) roll the sponge in chosen colour and let your child roll randomly on the paper. Encourage your child to change colours regularly and keep brushing until the whole paper is filled.
Project 4 - Potato Stamping
Using the paint pots, pour a dollop of the chosen colours on a disposable plate. Cut medium size potatoes in half. Each half is per colour used. Don't have a potato too large for your child's hand. Dip the potato in paint and have your child stamp away.
Some alternative options are for you to draw and paint a tree trunk with branches and then your child stamping randomly on the branches, creating flowers like cherry blossoms or cut a shape out of the potato base like a star or heart and then stamp. We stuck to the cherry blossoms which proudly hangs in my sister's home office.
|Just simple stamping|
|Cherry Blossom Tree|
Click on link for instructions:
|Same as potato stamping but more fun cause you can eat |
the ones not used for painting.
Project 6 - Koi Fish Finger Painting
This project is perfect for using up leftover paint. Dip your child's finger in paint and randomly swipe the finger on paper producing the impression of Chinese Koi Fish (aka Carp Fish).
|Trini enjoyed this process because she got to use her fingers.|
Let me know how you went with your own projects. Did you come up with any new ideas?
Next time I hope to write about finger painting using Crayola's Washable Finger Paint tubes which are completely non-toxic and safe for little ones.
|Hard at work with sponge brushing.|