We have a new group of 1-year-olds who are ready to start their art careers! For their first day of art class, we began with finger and texture painting, as I always do with newbies. On the table were bowls of paint (in the primary colors and white), scoopers, and finger paint paper. I encouraged them to touch the paint with their fingers, but also offered them tools to use when they were first reluctant to get messy.
With toddlers, I always start with tools such as combs, mardi gras beads, toy cars, etc. Not only do these objects create interesting textures, but they also allow young children to get their hands messy little by little (I used to think that all toddlers would dip their hands in paint right away, but many actually are very reluctant!) A standard brush is more removed from the paint, while mardi gras beads get completely painted which accidentally get children's hands messy. This gives them more confidence to touch the paint.
As the kids began to move around and explore the studio, I offered them some brushes and rollers to use at the easels.
They were excited to check out the materials on the shelves!
After our messy introduction to painting, we went outside for some water play/clean up time.