Toddlers and preschoolers learn by painting!
This week, 20-month-old Anna painted for the first time. We used Crayola paints, which wash out of everything for a low-stress experience. My other kids all started to paint at younger ages, but this past year has been very busy with getting our house ready to sell, selling the house, packing, driving across the country, unpacking (on my own with four kids, since Mike was still in Massachusetts), getting settled, and shuttling kids to different schools. There are many wonderful things that kids can learn by painting, so I am glad that I was finally able to introduce Anna to this delightful art medium! I even got it on video, which starts off shaky until I got smart and pulled out my tripod:
Lessons Learned by Painting
Painting is a wonderful way for kids to explore self-expression, but they learn other lessons as well! During this session, Anna and Lily explored color, texture, storytelling, and probably even composition, on some level!
Four-year-old Lily has done a lot of painting, but this was the first time she really got into color mixing. I really enjoyed seeing her excitement over creating new colors by mixing paint! She especially enjoyed mixing white with colors. Lily liked the muted colors, and it also made for a gentler result when she mixed other colors in.
I adored watching the careful attention Anna paid to her painting. The final work looked like your typical toddler muddy brown painting, but she worked on it very carefully! She made a beautiful red and orange painting later in the week, when I restricted her palette to those two colors.
Painting is also a great activity to use for bonding with your child. I was doing dinner prep while they painted for this post, but I enjoy sitting and painting alongside them as well – good for me since painting isn’t something I do much, and a wonderfully relaxing activity for everyone! Setting up an afternoon of painting can feel like a lot of work, but it is worth it!
Do you paint with your kids? What benefits do you see?