Let’s paint Elmer the Elephant!
Painting with kids appears to be a lot of work. The paints, the brushes, the mess! Yet, most of the time, painting with kids goes a lot smoother than we may have imagined. Let’s paint Elmer the Elephant and give this easy painting idea a try!
I’ve got a few ideas to make the painting a little more enjoyable for all.
RELATED: First time painting? Check out this guide to painting with kids!
Did I mention this painting idea is easy?
What makes it simple is the fact that it is process art.
With process art, the kids take the wheel. Other than a few guidelines (we will get to that), such as keep the paint on the paper and how to wash the brush between uses, anything goes!
Your child has the freedom to create his own patchwork for Elmer. Not sure who Elmer the Elephant is? I’ve got you covered in the supply list below. It is one of our absolute favorite books!
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I pick my paints wisely.
Here, I have grabbed our favorite muffin tin and added in primary colors. I also like to add white for my preschooler to brighten the colors he makes.
As he thinks about what colors, I hear him begin to think aloud.
Mom, what colors again make purple? Blue and Red, that’s right. I remember.
Different color combination questions were on repeat until dinner was made. – I know. Making dinner as your child paints sounds pretty ambitious. Remember, this is not his first time painting. Here is how he started painting as a toddler.
Now that my four-year-old has had some practice, I can actually get something done as he paints. With time and practice, you’ll get there as well!
I asked my preschooler if he would like me to add Elmer the Elephant’s signature patchwork grid, and he did not. I have a suspicion it was because he feels like he cannot paint within the parameter of each square.
Painting free-style is fine by me! As my four-year-old paints, new ideas will come to mind.
Before my preschooler paints, we review a few things.
- Here is where you mix the colors.
- This is where you can add the paint.
- Here is how you wash and dry your paint in between uses.
Taking the time to review these simple steps can avoid many frustrations from assuming our children know what we expect. This sets a positive start!
We also love watercolors as a more controlled painting idea.
Let’s talk details!
Whenever my children paint, we open and tape down paper grocery bags or this large builder’s paper shown above. I find it at Home Depot in the painting section. It makes a great base for the tabletop or canvas!
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Here is what you need:
- Elmer the Elephant book
- Washable liquid paint – starter set
- Washable liquid paint – 16oz
- Paintbrushes for kids
- Heavyweight white paper – to scale this down
- Use builder’s paper from a home improvement store to layer your tabletop. This is typically found in the painting aisle.
To set up, I tape down the paper on the table or garage floor and quickly sketch an elephant. Using Google for this is key! I type in easy elephant (or what I am searching for) drawing and typically find what I need!
Have you read this children’s book?
You don’t necessarily need to to get started, but it makes a super fun painting activity to go alongside a great read if so!
When will you try this simple painting activity for kids?