Watercolor Pumpkin

Pumpkin drawings are fun, but watercolor pumpkins are the best for practicing lots of painting techniques. The line work alone is perfect for teaching kids how to give their circles dimension, let alone all the shading possibilities. MATERIALS Watercolor paper Bowl, about 6″ diameter for tracing Sharpie marker, black Liquid watercolor paint DIRECTIONS The bowl is traced in pencil in … Read More

Cardboard Angler Fish

Once again I have to give credit to an amazing site called Krokotak.com. This cardboard art for kids is just too cute with its Angler fish underbite, spike teeth and pipe cleaner antennae. My students loved it! MATERIALS 16″ square of cardboard cut in half Paper cutter, old school style with arm that can chop (recommended) Utility scissors Black Sharpie … Read More

Easy Dog Drawing

For this easy dog drawing, I gave students a head template to trace, and then directions for the rest of the drawing. I recommend this dog tutorial for students that have already tried a bit of direct drawing. It’s pretty simple, but details like a chin that goes below the head, and curvy legs that extend in opposite directions may … Read More

Japanese Fan Painting

If you need a Japanese-themed art project, this works well even for kinders. In fact, I love the “wobbly” lines of the young ones – it’s what make their art so charming. MATERIALS • Watercolor paper • Circle template • Crayons • Liquid Watercolor paint   DIRECTIONS PREP:  These fans are all based on quarter circles, so you need to start with circle … Read More

Draw a Simple Lady Bug

Drawing a page of ladybugs couldn’t be much easier if you start with a circle template. Draw with a permanent black marker and you can just paint right over your cute little bugs. Red is always nice, but who says they can’t be rainbow colored too? When you are the artist, anything is possible. MATERIALS • Mixed media paper • Circle template, … Read More

Schulton Landscape Painting

Here’s a fun landscape painting for children project, inspired by Ton Schulton, a Dutch landscape artist. I wish I knew who first thought of this great approach for having students paint in his style. It’s basically working backwards, as in painting a wavy grid first and then designing buildings on top. MATERIALS • Watercolor paper • Watercolor tray paint • … Read More

Wild Things Monster Painting

“Where the Wild Things Are” art activities can begin with a large monster drawing. Children’s imagination can fill in the rest. MATERIALS • Drawing or multi-media paper, 9″ x 12″ or larger • Black Sharpie marker, black chisel tip • Tempera paint, yellow and blue • Paper plates DIRECTIONS 1. Read “Where the Wild Things Are” by Maurice Sendak. 2. … Read More

Koi Fish Painting

This Koi fish drawing step by step project has been one of my most popular pins on Pinterest since it went up years ago. The overhead view makes it a fun twist on the point of view. MATERIALS Koi Fish PDF Tutorial, crayon version Watercolor paper Crayons Liquid watercolor DIRECTIONS Students start with drawing the tear drop fish shape on … Read More

Watercolor Still Life

Try this abstract watercolor still life when you want young artists to learn about overlapping shapes. If they paint the intersections different colors, they are bound to end up with a really abstract painting. MATERIALS • Watercolor paper • Crayons • Liquid watercolor paint DIRECTIONS 1. Older students can draw these four shapes: coffee cup, goblet, bowl and plate, overlapping in … Read More

Mother Giraffe and Baby Painting

A little kinder named Nola painted this adorable painting. I showed her how to draw a giraffe, she showed me how to use the space between their two heads, with a heart. MATERIALS • Multimedia or watercolor paper • Black Sharpie marker • Crayons • Liquid watercolor paint DIRECTIONS 1. Start by drawing a line down the middle of the … Read More

Cute Bug Painting

This cute bug drawing is great for really young artists. You can’t get much simpler than this. MATERIALS • Multimedia paper • Sharpie marker, black • Crayons • Liquid watercolor paint DIRECTIONS I was inspired by some stock art found at istock.com. Students use a pencil to draw various sizes of bugs, some even upside down. 2. The pencil drawing … Read More

Painting with Pre-Kinders

Painting with pre-kinders is no small task. This flower project worked great as students essentially mixed colors on the paper, not in any messy cups. This week students layered red on blue to make some pretty purple flowers. I cheated a bit and added some magenta to the red watercolor just to make sure the flowers looked really purple. I’ve … Read More

Watercolor Sheep Painting

Here’s one of my favorite painting activities for kids, especially the very young like kinder and first grade. Make easy sheep bodies with of crayons, then painted the background. The crayons will resist the paint, so you can paint right over them. Just be sure to color their bodies really well with the white crayon so that none of the … Read More

PreK Painting, Little Birdies

I like my preschool art projects to have some structure, still have plenty of room for choice. This has both, and can make some stinkin’ cute drawings too. These little birds are easy to draw, and have an added extra cute factor. I made a template with dashed lines for them to start, especially because this was going to be … Read More

Flying Heart Balloon Painting

This could turn out to be one of your easiest Valentine’s Day art projects. My goal was to keep things really simple so kids could experiment with their wet-on-wet painting. This fourth grade artist, Lola, did an impeccable job using the colors to make shadows. I’m in love with that center balloon, which blends fuchsia and red. MATERIALS • Watercolor paper … Read More

Snowy Winter Silhouette Painting

You can make the most of some easy painting ideas if you start with a limited palette (like cool colors) and then allow time for layers to dry. This pretty silhouette comes from first painting the background, then a black silhouette in the foreground. Easy, yet very striking. MATERIALS • Multimedia paper, 9″ x 12″ • Tempera paint: blue, violet, … Read More

Snowy Winter Tree Painting

I’ve found this tree painting easy enough for even very young students, like first and second grade. Studying their basic structure will help them draw more realistically. I’ve posted my favorite method of drawing “Y Trees” before but this time it’s with a winter theme. • Draw a “Y” Tree Post MATERIALS • Multimedia paper • Oil Pastel, black • … Read More

Mixing Colors for a Fall Leaf

This fall leaf art project makes the most of two medias — tempera paint and oil pastels. They each add a little zing to the other. This project was about using three pigments to make varying shades of warm colors. Students could combine yellow, red, and white in any proportions they wanted. The results were all widely very different, but … Read More

Draw a Cartoon Turkey

A cute turkey drawing can be made just by adding a funny hat. This guy is pretty simple, and at the very least, you will get something far more interesting than just tracing your hand. • View and download PDF Turkey tutorial MATERIALS • Color print of Turkey tutorial • Black Sharpie • Crayons • Liquid watercolor paint DIRECTIONS 1. … Read More

Veterans Day Poppy Painting

Veterans Day art projects can make use of the bright, red poppy flower, which has a long history of association with this special day. This project also gives students a little lesson in perspective. By merely changing the size of the flowers, their painting can have much more dimension to it. MATERIALS • Multimedia paper • Tempera paints, cake form … Read More

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Art Projects for Kids