Absorption art is one of our favorite ways to create. It is such a simple way to let kids explore with art, and only a few supplies are needed.
- school glue
- liquid watercolors or food coloring
- small containers for watercolors
- optional: cookie sheets so the liquid stays contained and a drop cloth to protect the work surface (We use a shower curtain from Dollar Tree)
JZ (5) squirted the liquid watercolors into the containers. As you can see we only used a small amount of watercolors then filled the containers with water. Liquid watercolors are a bit pricey, but they can be diluted quite a bit while still providing gorgeous results. We have had this set for over a year, and they are still half full.
Prepare the invitation to create with absorption art, then invite your children to begin making glue designs. Encourage them to use a decent amount of glue, so more salt sticks and the color spreads farther. I free handed egg shapes on white cardstock, so our finished projects would look like decorated Easter eggs.
J-Bug (3) was content with a small amount of glue. I think he was eager to dump the salt. Please note I used measuring spoons for no reason other than they were the closest spoons to me when I was setting up the invitation. We did not measure the salt before dumping it on our eggs.
Shake off any excess salt then drop colored water onto the glue and salt mixture.
The idea is to drop the colored water right onto the salt covered glue and watch it absorb and "run" through the salt. J-Bug and my toddler twins mostly just squirted a ton of water onto their eggs and watched the colors blend.
Using pipettes or eye droppers is a great exercise for developing fine motor skills.
JZ made it a personal goal to see how much colored water he could suck up into the pipette.
Tank and Peanut (20 months) have shown a lot of interest in our art projects lately. They have been listening to instructions very well and treat our supplies with respect. I keep rules to a minimum and focus on what is most important like keeping the containers of water on the table.
I expect a mess when crafting with toddlers, but I do my best to establish good habits. If they dumped the water the art session would be ruined for everyone. While JZ and J-Bug know that accidents are part of having little brothers, I also want to respect their work and space.
By choosing what is most important to me for each project I avoid overwhelming them with too many rules. Spilled salt can easily be shaken off big brother's artwork, but a liquid cannot. I use positive phrases like, "Keep the water on the table," and avoid negative phrases like, "Don't spill the water." In addition to making our time positive and uplifting, using positive phrases tells toddlers what to do instead of what not to do.
Please note that if there was an accidental water spill it would be met with a calm reaction. Toddlers are curious little people, and they can also be clumsy. I kept paper towels nearby just in case.
These early introductions to art can shape the way toddlers view art. I am doing my best to Raise Creative Kids, and I want their experiences to be positive.
For more ideas for Easter craft, recipes, and activities follow my Easter board on Pinterest.