Painting with toddlers

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on May 7, 2010

in Creative Art, Infant and Toddler

What started off a Q-tip painting quickly turned into full finger and body painting. This was Wy’s first time exploring painting with Q-tips.

I started by having Wy sit across from me. I showed him how to dip the Q-tip into the paint and then swirl it around on the paper. Wy watched with interest but he would not touch the paint or Q-tips.

I decided to have Wy come and sit in my lap instead. For some reason, while sitting in my lap, Wy was more willing to explore the idea. Wy was more interested in exploring the cup and the Q-tip at first. I knew that before we could move onto any painting, I needed to let Wy explore the materials first.

It wasn’t long before Wy was ready to try putting the paint on the paper. I held the cups and offered each color and  Wy dipped his own Q-tip in the paint and rubbed it on the paper. At this point, Wy was simply exploring the process. Exploring the process is part of developing the creative process.

Occasionally, Wy would decide to get up and walk away for a minute then he would come back and try the process out some more. He was progressively getting more interested in the marks he was making on the paper. I could see him focus more on the mark making and less on just wanting to explore the cups and Q-tips.

The final outcome doesn’t represent a rainbow or words or even an intended design. What the final outcome does represent is Wy’s successful first experience at exploring the process of painting with Q-tips!

This article is being shared with you by Deborah Stewart of Teach Preschool - Sharing the wonders of early learning in action!

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