Saturday, May 25, 2013


Every Memorial Day weekend the Charleston Spoleto Festival begins.  There are plays, concerts, symphonies, and everything you could dream of to celebrate the arts, including special events in the park for children.  Here are a few outdoor art activities you might like to try this summer with your class, if you work at a camp, at Bible School, etc.   

Dirt Painting
Materials:    dirt, water, plastic container, brushes, paper
Directions:   Mix the dirt with water to make a thick liquid.  Paint a picture with brushes or with fingers.
Adaptations:  Look for different types of soil to create different shades of “dirt” paint.
Ice Cube Painting
Materials:   plastic ice cube tray, paint, craft sticks, paper
Directions:  Pour paint in ice cube trays and insert a craft stick in each section.  Freeze.  Pop the “paint cubes” out of the tray and swirl around on the paper.  As the paint melts, it will create a design.
Adaptations:  Make similar ice cubes with water and liquid water color.

Wheel Painting
Materials:   toy cars, trucks, and other vehicles with wheels, paint, newsprint or large sheets of paper, paper plates
Directions:   Put a small amount of paint in the paper plates.  Dip the wheels of the vehicles in the paint, and then “drive” them across the paper.
Adaptations:  Give children rubber fishing worms and dip them in paint.  Wiggle across a sheet of paper to make designs.

Food Color Dip
Materials:  4 small cups, food coloring, paper towels, water
Directions:  Take the cups and put water and a large squirt of food coloring in each cup.  Children take a paper towel and fold it into a small square.  They dip each corner in a different color.  Open and dry.

Fence Painting
Materials:  large sheets of paper, clothespins, paints, paint brushes
Directions:  Attach large sheets of paper to a fence with clothespins.
Children can freely paint on the paper.
Adaptations:  Put paint in pie pans and give children fly swatters to dip in the paint and swat on the paper.

Window Painting
Materials:  shaving cream (non-menthol)
Directions:  Squirt shaving cream on windows and let children fingerpaint.  Clean up is easy with a hose.