Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Finger Painting and Getting to Know the Studio

The new mini-session has brought a whole new group of children to the studio. Two of the four classes (a 2s class and a 1s class) are mostly newcomers so we started off the session with finger painting. I love to offer finger painting to new students because it is one of the messiest, simplest activities and is a great introduction to the qualities of tempera paint. The kids also learn that the studio is a place for messy exploration and open-ended creativity! I first offered the children bowls of paint and encouraged them to scoop the paint onto their glossy finger-paint paper.
For children who were reluctant to get their fingers into the paint, I gave them a tool (a popsicle stick or small whisk) to jump start their exploration.

I slowly began to bring out more items to use with the paints that would encourage the kids to get their hands messy- like these mardi-gras beads!
Shaking glitter from a salt shaker was another exciting addition to the painting experience.

The children were also invited to move around the studio and investigate the interesting materials on the shelf.
The 1s class took the opportunity to toddle around and check out the studio, while the 2s class was content getting messy at the table!
After a while, everyone moved around to work at the easels and the collaborative canvas.

For the twos group, I introduced bubble wrap prints towards the end of class. The children used foam rollers to cover the bubble wrap with paint, then pressed it (paint side down) onto a piece of paper.
Another fun use for the bubble wrap was to make "jumping prints" on the ground. The kids used the same rolling paint technique to cover the bubble wrap, placed it onto a piece of paper on the ground, and jumped on the bubble wrap over and over to create a popping sound.
Then they peeled up the wrap to discover their jumping print!
All of the messy discoveries eventually led to clean up time in the water table- which is sometimes just as fun as making the mess!

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