Watercolors gave us a perfect break from tempera and allowed students to explore using soft bristle painbrushes and new ways of mixing and blending color. Instead of having thick globs of tempera to swirl together students layered liquid watercolor brush strokes for great effects.

Students drew with oil pastels before using watercolor. I explained to the class that the oil pastel would push its way up through the watercolor paint and the picture they drew would not be lost.

Some students really enjoyed the drawing aspect of this project and even shaded in areas.
I also encouraged the use of the white pastel calling it the peek-a-boo color. At first the white pastel drawing gets lost on the white paper but then you can go hunting for it with the watercolor and it pops up and surprises you.

My goal was to have each child try both the oil pastel and watercolor and try and cover their entire paper with art.

We used watercolor paper for this project which made a great difference. The paper didn’t warp too much and quickly soaked up wet strokes. You can see here some toddler students experimenting with the amount of pressure needed to make marks. It doesn’t take much with a soft bristle brush!

For an extension of the watercolors and some outdoor fun we tried liquid water color spray painting.
My wonderful friend and fellow studio owner at Make + Believe has documented tons of fun and innovative ways to use watercolor including the handy dandy spray bottled. Some kids loved this project, and some where more interested in the water table. Surprisingly my youngest students with a little determination were able to managed the squeeze action to get the watercolor out of the bottle. This was great for muscle building!

I used an old white sheet hung on a clothes line and backed it with a vinyl table cloth to protect the siding on my house.

The chicks are two weeks old and loved by all the students!

It’s pretty cute how they look out the window into the classroom.

Here is a student sharing her art with the chickens.


I invited a few of my older students in a small class to decorate the box. They happily excepted and this was the fabulous outcome!