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November 7, 2013

Turkey Absorption Art for Kids

Thanksgiving Art for Kids

Have you ever tried absorption art?  It's really quite amazing to watch, and no matter how many times we try it, my kids are always delighted to watch the watercolors pull through the salt.  We have made absorption art fireworks, absorption art Easter eggs, and ice art.  Our play has been focused on Thanksgiving this week, so I decided to put a Thanksgiving twist on this classic art activity for kids.  Much like our Thanksgiving sensory paints and cranberry dough I wanted this art project to stimulate our senses and excite us for Thanksgiving dinner.

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How to Make Absorption Art Turkeys

Directions:  Give your kids school glue and instruct them to make designs on their paper.  JZ (6) and I made turkeys.  The other boys ages 4 and 2 doodled.  Squeezing the glue bottles has the added benefit of building fine motor skills.  Next have them shake salt over the glue designs.  Tank (2) mashed his salt into the glue.   Shake off all the excess glue.

Have the kids drip liquid watercolors onto the salt covered glue.  The color immediately runs through the glue as if being pulled.  It's quite fascinating.

Typically I use watered down liquid watercolors.  This time I added spices and scents to the watercolor paint to go along with our Thanksgiving theme.  I made sage green, pumpkin pie orange, clove brown, lemon yellow, and cranberry red.  I mixed sage into the green watercolors and pumpkin pie spice into the orange.  I put a few whole cloves in the brown watercolor paint and let it sit for awhile before we started our art project.  I squeezed lemon juice into the yellow and added a tablepsoon of cranberry sauce leftover from our cranberry dough.  Like I said I watered down the watercolors.  I used roughly 1 part watercolors to 8 parts of water.  Liquid watercolors go a long way while maintaining their vibrant color.

Like the glue, pipettes are a wonderful tool for boosting fine motor skills.

This is a messy art project.  Here are tips for messy play as well as laundry tips to avoid stains and keep clothes bright.

After coloring his painting, J-Bug (4) decided it needed more glue.

Tank (2) found the whole cloves in the red paint and dropped them in the paint and picked them back up about a dozen times, giggling with delight each time.

For more turkey art and Thanksgiving play follow me on Pinterest.

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More Thanksgiving Activities for Kids:

  No cook homemade paint recipe that captures a few of the best scents of Thanksgiving dinner!


  1. This was an idea I was thinking about trying with the kids before Thanksgiving. I love seeing how they turned out. Very cool!

  2. I haven't tried this kind of painting before but I loved your description of it! Adding scents was an awesome idea too!

  3. This is an awesome idea! I want to try this with my children at work. Did you use normal paper or did you use heavier, cardstock paper?


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