Messy play painting is a fabulous, fun activity for children. Today at creche we set up a painting and printing station and fourteen toddlers were giggling with delight as they explored the colours, sensations and techniques available.
Our Painting Station was set up just five minutes before the children arrived, using the materials that happened to be around – and turned in to an hour’s worth of creative fun.
To make our paint and print station
We stuck a long roll of paper to a child-height table using sticky tape (to hold it in place while the children painted)
Provided paint in little frying pans, borrowed from the home corner kitchen – which were just the right size to fit our stampers and came with the added bonus of a handle, which the children used to pass the different coloured paints to one another.
Offered some interesting items to paint and stamp with: cotton buds, sponge shapes, stamping pads, toy tins of beans (that helpful home corner kitchen again), plastic cups and yoghurt pots.
This was a collaborative, community art work, with all the children invited to join in and add their own designs to the piece. Some popped in for a few minutes to have a quick try, others stayed the whole session, trying all the colours and materials on offer.
Messy play like this is open-ended, so the children can use the materials whichever way they like.
Some printed, some rolled the toy tin can through the paint and along the paper to make tracks. Some swirled with the cotton buds, some drew shapes, some made dots. Some pressed their hands in the paint and then made prints, some used the palms of their hands to swirl the paint colours together. There was a mixture of quiet concentration, chat and co-operation about sharing materials, and shrieks of delight.
And how messy was the messy play?
Fourteen two and three-year-olds, in aprons to cover their clothes, kept (almost) all the paint on the paper and tootled off to the basins to wash their own hands when they’d finished. So, don’t be scared of a little messy play – give it a try and see what your little artists can create.