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Are you gearing up for your kids’ summer break? We are already in the midst of ours. The days are longer, yet filled with so much more fun and giggles. Since I practically run a mini-preschool (not literally, but I have triplets so it’s a lot like a preschool!), I try to have planned activities for them on most days. The boys have finished a great year at preschool, and I’m trying my best to keep their little minds learning here at home on their break, as well. They especially enjoyed handprint and footprint art at preschool. They are also learning their letters. I decided to combine the two with a different handprint art activity for each letter of the alphabet. Plus, the boys love paint, and this is a great way to paint with a purpose!
Since we have been doing these activities at home, I’m sharing them with you as a part of a fun June series: Handprint the Alphabet (one fun handprint craft for each letter of the alphabet). I’ll kick off letter “A” tomorrow, but I wanted to start by sharing a few tips for great handprint art with kids.
Handprint art is fun but can be messy. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
-Always protect the surface under the paper. Yes, I know it’s just handprint art and, in a perfect world, should be minimally messy. But little hands always find a way to paint what they shouldn’t. I have a large piece of cardboard that I keep in the garage specifically for painting projects.
-Use a paintbrush for applying paint to the hands. Do not dip the kiddo’s hand in the paint. Trust me on this one.
-For different shapes, paint only parts of the hand. You’ll see an example of this in tomorrow’s “A” handprint art.
-Choose a paper based on the purpose of the project. We use regular copy paper for simple, quick crafts. We pull out the card stock for keepsakes, grandparent gifts, or handprint art that will be framed.
-Invest in a good kid’s fingerpaint. This fingerpaint is my favorite! I’ve been using it since my daughter was little. The colors are vibrant and transfer well to any paper, yet it washes out of clothes and off of furniture easily.
-Different pressures result in different shapes in handprint art. For example, when doing finger prints, hard pressure will result in an oval and light pressure will result in a circle. Take a few minutes to experiment with your child and get a feel of what pressure leads to what shape.
-Remember to have fun! Not all kids like having their hands painted. Letting them free-paint first is sometimes a good way to transfer into a handprint art project.
Check back tomorrow as I officially launch the Handprint the Alphabet series for June! I hope you and your preschooler will join the boys and me as we paint our way through the summer.