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Paint for babies and toddlers

Paint is a great texture to play with . Plus and amazing way to add creativity to play.

I've listed 3 different ideas for painting with your little ones from babies to toddlers.

Babies 0-6 months

Start with no mess painting. Pop a little blob of paint and paper in a ziplock bag and encourage your little one to hold, touch, stand and sit on it to move the paint around the bag. Great for encouraging tummy time too.

To remove the painting cut the bag open and peel it out carefully and leave it out to dry.

No mess painting is often an activity that needs repeated as your little one gets used to the texture, temperature and force needed to spread the paint around.

Weaning babies and toddlers

You can then move onto edible paint!

If you have a little one who loves to put things in their mouth, try using edible paint, made from yogurt and tiny amounts of food colouring.

It is easy to spread on surfaces like trays (easy to wash!) and paper.

It is not able to be kept as a piece of artwork but it is an amazing texture to discover paint.

You can also make your own edible paint. This recipe is super easy to make and uses regular items found in the cupboard. It is safe for children to put into their mouths but bland and not tasty to discourage eating the paint. It is not a sweet or sticky paint and has a wonderful smooth texture….perfect for finger painting sensory play!

You will need

  • liquid food colouring

  • 4 table spoons of corn flour

  • 1 cup of boiling water

  • cold water

  • whisk and a bowl

How to make edible paint :

  1. In a medium saucepan, mix the cornflour with enough cold water to make a paste. (Not too runny).

  2. Pour in 1 cup of boiling water and stir thoroughly so there are no lumps.

  3. Turn on medium heat on the hob and mix. The mixture will start to change and you will notice some clear streaks forming in the mixture. Once you see this, turn off the heat and continue stirring. It will start to thicken and turn into a wonderful, custard-like consistency.

  4. Spoon equal amounts into empty jars, cups or containers and add food colouring. Mixing until completely combined. For each colour, we added 3 drops of yellow, green, red and blue. To make orange, we added 1 drop of red and 2 yellow and to make purple, we added 1 drop of blue and 2 red.

  5. Store in the fridge covered with cling film for up to 2 weeks. This paint recipe does not have any preservative in it, so it is important to check that the paint has not expired before giving it to children.

This activity is great for babies, toddlers and children of all ages and abilities as it is open-ended and unstructured. It provides an opportunity to explore the paint safely and freely. Children will enjoy using their fingers to make marks with the paint in their own way. Plus it washes easily out of clothes .

Toddlers and pre schoolers

Real paint should be introduced once your little one is less likely to put things in their mouths. Always choose a non-toxic paint and ones like crayola are easy to wash off surfaces and out of clothes.

Initally little ones will use their hands more than tools to paint with but once they are ready you can add chunky brushes, sponges, spoons, cotton pads and spreaders to move the paint around. Transferring the paint into a little pot with a top on or in a small dish can help control the paint that reaches the paper and help control the mess too!

I also really love these paint sticks too! The perfect size for little hands to hold and mark make with.

Let me know if you try any of these ideas.

Love Elisa xx

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