Neat-freaks beware: this WILL get messy. I prepared my boys, one messy one neat, by disrobing them. An art smock would work also, but chillin' in unders-only is way more fun!
Can you tell which one is messy and which one is neat?
Credit for this fun activity goes to my mom. She's notorious for being
crazy super fun when it comes to all things kids. There's an infamous story in our family that involves a kiddie pool in the living room, but that's a story for another day. So, on an afternoon where the kids were particularly restless I channeled a bit of dear 'ol mom and busted out the pudding paint.
Instant pudding - vanilla, chocolate and any other fun flavors
Food coloring (optional)
Prepare pudding as directed. Add food coloring to vanilla pudding to make lots of fun colors. While pudding sets, tape the wax paper to the counter to make clean up easier. Once pudding is set, divide into small bowls for each child. Now for the fun part. Encourage your children to finger paint with the pudding. We, as parents, spend a lot of time teaching our children manners, especially table manners, which is a good thing, but you may be surprised by their hesitation towards sticking their cute little fingers into their pudding. I expected E, my 2-year-old, to dig right in, as he does with most other things, but even he waited for the go-ahead. So I reached in, scooped up a handful, and plopped it on the wax paper and began to finger paint. Cue memory sequence. I couldn't help letting my mind wander to our little table where I sat as a child with my mother and brother and finger painted with pudding. And then I remembered sharing this activity with kids that I babysat when I was a teenager.
Ahhh, ok, back to reality. Finger painting with pudding has many upsides, least of which is that you can eat it. Yes, most (let's hope all) finger paints are non-toxic, but do we really want our children eating whatever undisclosed ingredients are in that stuff? I think not. We did lots of what Lou, my 4-year-old, calls "scribble scrabbling", which means a bunch of random nonsense and then we also used it for practicing letters and words.
These are letters I "painted" since Lou refused to let me photograph his, which were much more fun and artistic.
We didn't use food coloring this time, so we just had brown and cream, but we had a lot of fun! You could also use paint brushes or other painting supplies. So at our house we finger paint with pudding. What fun painting ideas do you have?