Friday, March 1, 2013

Homemade finger paints

In the interest of full disclosure, I will start this post by stating that there is a big part of me that loathes finger paints. They are messy and only keep her occupied for maybe 20 minutes max, and then it's a huge pain to clean up. We've tried the much neater "finger paint in a ziploc bag" solution, but of course, where is the fun if you can't make a huge mess? I figure if I am stuck doing finger paints for the foreseeable future, we should  at least do them right.

While browsing the internets, I came across this post on Learning 4 Kids, detailing how to make puffy paint. Even though Ella is not at the age where she cares about the puffiness of her paint, I decided to try it with her since she is at the age where she eats the paint. And if she is going to eat the paint, I would rather know exactly what is in it, even though her store-bought paints claim to be non-toxic.

It also is an easy and quick learning activity. We counted while I measured out the ingredients and went over colors as she made her palette selection. She helped mix and we talked about the texture of the ingredients. Of course, finger paints are a fantastic sensory activity.

Best of all, the homemade paints were SO much easier to clean up than the store-bought ones (washable and water based? The stains I am still scrubbing out of her clothes would beg to differ). A quick rinse of her hands and face, a few dabs of her shirt with a sponge, a wipe down of the high chair tray, and we were done.

We just might end up doing finger paints more often.

The two seconds where she was content actually painting on the paper instead of on her face. 

And that's more like it. 

Puffy Paint Recipe (as found on Learning 4 Kids)
1 tbsp self-rising flour
1 tbsp salt
3 tsp water
Food coloring

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