Updated: Sep 29, 2018
This project is great for children who feel they need their work to come out perfectly while they also want to do everything independently. This combination has been a source of tantrums in our house, for sure! It's also one of my favorites when I need them to work on something without my assistance. Actually, yesterday I got through an entire phone call without interruptions because of this project.
These never come out the same twice and you can use whatever you have handy: paints, crayons, oil pastels, colored pencils, markers, etc. You can bedazzle it with stickers, glitter and little jewels! Dot markers are also fun (example at the bottom of this post).
Naming these also requires creativity. I'm always so interested to hear the names they choose because it's never a name I would expect.
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Using masking tape, secure your paper to a piece of cardboard (or table). I like to make a nice little frame around the paper to give the end product a more finished look. Then create stripes across the paper with the tape, making different kinds of shapes or a grid. *Apply medium pressure on the tape so that it doesn't rip the paper when you remove it.*
Have your child pick their favorite art supplies to color between the taped sections.
Carefully peel the tape to reveal the colored shapes. The tape ensures neat lines. My daughter used to get SO stressed out worrying about coloring outside the lines and would always ask me to color around the edges for her. This project allowed her to practice coloring without me (and without freaking out). Below we used small watercolor paper. When finished, these smaller ones look great on the wall in a series of three, by the way.
Choose another medium to color the spaces in between. She chose markers, but watercolors are great with oil pastels because they won't mix. We exclusively used those two media at first because my daughter did NOT want any colors to mix. If this is true for your child, be sure to do the oil pastels first, then watercolor.
Peel the tape from around the edges and embellish until your little heart is content! It's also fun to give it a title and sign/date it in pencil at the bottom.
Some other examples of this project: