Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Coloured Ice Painting with Toddlers

Age: Most suitable for Toddler 1-3

  • Ice cube trays
  • Water
  • Food dye or watercolour paint or coloured pigments
  • Paper
  • Deep baking tray
Discuss ice -What is it? How is it made? What is going to happen to the paper when the ice cube melts?
Discuss colour theory -What will happen when colour x is mixed with colour y?


  1. Make up Coloured Ice solution by adding desired amount of colour (Note Food dye will stain fingers so this method is better for less mess) and  then freeze. Make shallow ice cubes as there will be too much water for the paper. It will only take a few hrs for shallow amounts.
  2. Place paper in deep wall baking tray and add two cubes (add 2 primary colours so that the child can discover colour mixing).
  3. Get the child to tilt tray on different angles to move the ice across the paper as it melts.
  4. Extension: Try using different pigments to create different types of watercolour paint ie crushed chalk, food spices and flavourings such as mustard, saffron, curry etc
A great summer art activity! 

Links to Curriculum:
Science -exploring change, liquid to solid, melting
Maths -Measuring volume and ratio

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Rainbow Fish (Resist Painting)

Age 3+

Difficulty: Need to apply pressure with wax or alternatively use white oil pastel/crayon

Art Paper preferable (as opposed to photocopy paper)
Watercolour Paint (I am using Mont Marte Tempera Block Set)
Wax candle or oil pastel/crayon in white
Sequins or foil

  1. READ Engage the children by reading "The Rainbow Fish" as stimulus to the activity
  2. DISCUSS Talk about the different aspects of a Fish which is the subject of the artwork ie Fin, Scale, Eye, Lips, Colour etc. Moral of the story is about sharing.
  3. DEMO Demonstrate the art activity. 
  • First take the wax candle and make an "invisible" drawing. Tell students to move their bodies or the paper around to see where the lines have been drawn. (Alternatively a light pencil drawing will suffice).
  •  Using the soft brush and watercolour paint, brush on paper to 'reveal' the invisible drawing. Use different colours -of the rainbow. What colours make a rainbow? How do rainbows happen?
  • Once dry, use the glue stick and large half circle sequins randomly to add the shinny scales. Use stickers for the eye. Go back and add oil pastels if they want to accentuate detail.
Traced Rainbow Fish by Age 4
Freedrawn Rainbow Fish by 4 yr old

Transparent, resist, negative space, translucent, watercolour, invisible,

Australian Curriculum:
Visual Arts
F-2: Explore ideas, experiences, observations and imagination to create visual artworks and design, including considering ideas in artworks by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists (ACAVAM106)
F-2: Use and experiment with different materials, techniques, technologies and processes to make artworks (ACAVAM107)

F: Respond to texts, identifying favourite stories, authors and illustrators (ACELT1577)
1: Creating literature Recreate texts imaginatively using drawing, writing, performance and digital forms of communication (ACELT1586) 
2: Creating literature: Create events and characters using different media that develop key events and characters from literary texts (ACELT1593)
F: Biological sciences: Living things have basic needs, including food and water (ACSSU002) 
1: Biological sciences: Living things have a variety of external features (ACSSU017) 
2: Biological sciences: Living things grow, change and have offspring similar to themselves (ACSSU030)

The Rainbow Fish story in 1 pg PDF
The Storyline Online website is great. Listen to someone reading the story here.