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Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Brilliant Baby Play - Foam Painting

Im thrilled to welcome Susanne from Ghost Writer Mummy to Creative Playhouse to offer up the next instalment of the Brilliant Baby Play series! I love this idea and will be inviting Poppy to do it this week! 

The baby has been showing so much interest in painting and whenever the older children are involved in an activity, she always wants to join in. Of course, I always let her, but I wanted to create an activity that was just for her so that I could really help her make the most of what could be an incredible sensory experience. So we decided to do some Foam Painting!

foam painting messyfun2

This turned out to be a wonderful experience for us both because I was able to witness the baby as she was completely and utterly indulged in her activity. And the fact that we used foam meant that the mess was kept to a fair minimum- no spills and lots of sensory play!

To make the foam paint we:
  • used plastic cups left over from a party, so that the baby could hold them herself and they could easily be thrown away afterwards.
  • squirted the cups two thirds full with shaving foam and added a squirt of paint.
  • we stirred the mixture- the baby helped with this and we talked about the paint being frothy, blue, red, pink, white, thick, gloopy.
  • we used paint brushes and so talked about holding the brush with our fingers and using them to stir and to paint.
foam painting materials
To make the activity baby friendly and 'on her level' I taped easel paper to the floor and left the pots and brushes where she could reach them. I showed her how to use the brush to take paint from the cup and splat it onto the paper and after a couple of demonstrations she had a go herself. I observed that she:
  • enjoyed dipping the brushes into the paint and transferring it onto the paper.
  • liked to hold the cups herself and get her fingers inside to explore the foamy texture.
  • use her feet! She painted them and wiggled her toes as the foamy paint crept between them.
  • use her fingers! She realised she could transfer paint onto the paper this way and she spent some time swirling her fingers round on the paper.
We talked about how the paint felt, and the patterns she was making on the paper.
foampainting exploring
What made this activity so perfect for the baby was the fact that she could get right into her painting, carrying her little pots and brushes around with her. We experimented with:
  • handprints- talking about how my hands were big and hers were small, and the different colours of our hand prints.
  • footprints- how we could make tracks along the paper with our feet.
  • splodges- how the paint brush made different patterns and shapes.
We had great fun! This is a sensory painting experience that is perfect for babies. The paint stays in the pots and has a pleasing texture and a great effect on the paper. Our finished masterpiece is going to be used for a collage and we have some lovely hand and foot prints to cherish too.

I recommend doing this activity on a wipeable floor if possible and be on hand with wipes or moist cloths to clean hands, feet and legs afterwards. I did direct the baby at certain points, but mostly I left her to explore the paint by herself, so it was lovely to see her concentration and fascination. A great one for babies and toddlers!
foampainting messy fun1

Susanne Remic is a mother of three and a primary school teacher, blogging at Ghost Writer Mummy and ivillage UK. She is also jumping from a plane in July to raise money for The Lullaby Trust (formerly FSID charity) and would appreciated sponsors here.

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You can find the rest of the Brilliant Baby Play series here: 


And you can stay updated with all the latest from Creative Playhouse here:

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