Toddlers are not difficult to entertain. Even the simplest of art activities will enrapture them. No, what is difficult is entertaining them for a long time. Toddlers have short attention spans and the same activity that enraptured them five minutes ago will spell boredom now. So what does that mean for an art playdate? It means, that in order to spend two constructive hours, you need to have more than one trick up your sleeve.
The first thing we did was create cosmic sun catchers (if you want to know more about that, look here: cosmic sun catchers) and though the gooey glue and drippy paint lured even the most reluctant toddler to participate, it only held their attention for a total of thirty minutes. So we took a break, we ate a little, we read a story filled with all the appropriate sound effects as the bears growled and roared and all the moments of suspense as they went from room to room discovering Goldilock’s mischievousness.
Then we came back to begin our next fun art project: marble painting! We had small pieces of paper, precut and taped to the inside of small plastic boxes and a bag full of glossy marbles (the kids were excited to see those!). Each child took one box and one marble. Then we poured out some of the brightest colors of acrylic paints into a muffin tin, rolled our marbles in our favorite colors and dropped them into our boxes. Then all we had to do was shake the box around, rolling the paint filled marble and creating a gorgeous abstract pattern! And whenever we ran out of paint, the marble took another dip into the muffin tin and we started all over with another color!
Here’s what the final products looked like:
It actually turns out beautiful enough to grace your child’s bedroom wall, I know Manahil is super excited to have hers up.
To try this at home you need:
-A square shoe box or plastic box
-A paper cut to the size of the box and taped by doubling the tape up and sticking it to the box
-A bunch of bright acrylic paints poured into a muffin tin (or a palette, in the case of fewer kids)
-A bag of marbles
-An apron (oh yes, this art project is about to get messy!)
-A group of toddlers in love with marbles who can’t wait to get rolling!
I would love to know if you tried this at home, and if yes, how it went. Leave your comments below!