Puffy paint sunflowers

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on July 16, 2013

in Creative Art, Puffy Paint Sunflowers

Puffy paint can be used to make almost any kind of drawing or collage and we enjoy bringing out the puffy paint every so often for the children to explore…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

On this occasion, we were talking about sunshine and sunflowers and used the puffy paint as a way to invite the children to make their own sunflowers…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

Anytime we use puffy paint, we must first mix up a new batch because this type of puffy paint doesn’t stay good for very long. To make puffy paint we simply mix…

  • 1 Cup of Flour
  • 3 tsp Baking Powder
  • 3 tsp salt
  • Food Color
  • Water

for each color of paint we want to make and then we pour each color it its own plastic squeeze bottle (purchased in the kitchen section at Walmart)…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

Although you can use puffy paint on heavy construction paper, the best canvas for a flour-based puffy paint is a piece of white cardboard so you can move the painted canvas from one location to the other more easily…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

The squeeze bottles make the puffy paint come out in nice lines so the children can use the paint for drawing different shapes and designs. Mrs. Courtney demonstrated how to use the puffy paint to draw a sunflower for our pre-k students and then invited the children to give the process a try on their own…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

Once each child completed a puffy paint sunflower (or other), then we put the piece of cardboard into the microwave any where from 30 to 60 seconds depending on how much puffy paint the child used on the canvas. The microwave quickly cooks the flour paint so that it dries out and stays puffy on the canvas…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

Drawing with puffy paint invites the children to use the muscles in their hands to squeeze the bottles along with their self-regulating skills to regulate how hard to squeeze in order to make lines versus puddles on their canvas…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

Eye-hand coordination is also being promoted as the children guide the squeeze bottles and the flow of puffy paint to draw their sunflowers…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

The children spent quite some time creating their sunflowers and most of the children chose to make more than one. We sent most of the puffy paint sunflowers home and kept some of the extras to decorate our room for a few days….

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

As already mentioned, puffy paint could be used to draw any kind of shape or design and my pre-k students really enjoy the challenge of drawing something specific (including their names) by the end of the school year…

Puffy paint sunflowers by Teach Preschool

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1 Rob Smith July 16, 2013 at 6:42 am


Thank you so much for this post. I’d love to do some of the things my kids get to do. My daughter is four and my son is six. They have had so much fun in preschool.

Now I get a chance to do this activity with them and really play with them. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

2 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. July 16, 2013 at 12:35 pm

Your kids are at a great age for so many wonderful ideas! You should have lots of fun!

3 Cindy July 16, 2013 at 8:57 am

What a neat idea! I’ve never tried that – but I will. (:

4 Janet T. July 16, 2013 at 8:58 am

Do you have any trouble with the dried paint popping off if the cardboard gets flexed?

5 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. July 16, 2013 at 12:35 pm

Hi Janet,
No, I haven’t had a problem with that but I suppose it is possible if you toss the canvas or flex it around enough. We always use heavy pieces of cardboard for puffy paint projects (I cut it up from leftover sheets of cardboard) so the cardboard is stiff.

6 Donna July 16, 2013 at 7:56 pm

The ingredients mentoned seem like they would mix into colored paste.
About how much water would you “guess-timate” you use?

7 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. July 16, 2013 at 10:36 pm

I am not too sure but if the mixture seems too thick, just keep adding more water until you get a smooth paste to work with.

8 Jessica @ Play Trains! July 16, 2013 at 9:26 pm

I love how the paint runs together! :-) How fun.

9 Vicki Blacken July 16, 2013 at 9:52 pm

Another terrific idea! We will definitely be trying this one in the fall. Thanks for your great suggestions. I especially like all the DIY projects you incorporate into your program.

10 Jackie Higgins July 16, 2013 at 10:19 pm

We’ve never tried painting with squeeze bottles but I bet it gives those little hand muscles a good workout! Thanks for the recipe for the puffy paint too. Can’t wait to try this one out.

11 JDaniel4's Mom July 18, 2013 at 1:13 pm

What a pretty craft! The Sunflower House is a favorite at my house.

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