The elements of art are generally considered to be line, shape, texture, form, space, color and value, with the additions of mark making, and materiality.
The following projects were curated from some fantastic people and organizations. They combine one or more elements of art into fun art projects for kids!
#1 Nature Creativity (Texture, Shape, Color, Form)
Thanks to Laura Marks of Scattered Solutions where they offer live, online, small group classes in 100+ topics for ages 0-17. Laura shared:
Our students recently completed a nature hunt project called “Nature Craftivity” where our scholars were tasked with the following:
1. Go on a nature hunt where you’ll search for sticks, leaves, and petals and gather them in a bag.
2. Lay out all your nature treasures so you can see them all. Try and group colors and shapes together.
3. On a piece of paper draw (or print a template) of something you saw in nature — a tree, a bird, a pond, etc.
4. Glue your nature elements into your drawing, using lines, shapes, textures, and form to make your drawing come to life through nature!
#2 Drip Art & San Painting (Color, Texture, Shape, Line)
This activity is thanks to Ashley Bass founder and author of Oh Yellow, a pregnancy and parenting resource for parents. Oh-yellow.com reaches new and expectant mothers, providing well-researched information and advice on pregnancy and raising babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. Ashley shared:
My little ones LOVE art and creativity! Our favorite hands-on projects lately have been drip art and sand painting.
We love using drip art to teach our little ones the element of line by letting them get creative (and a little messy!) We use pipettes to drip water colors down paper on an easel. Gravity demonstrates how lines can be used to create beautiful art in a really fun and unique way.
Sand painting is the perfect activity for little ones to learn about using texture in art. And it’s so easy! We mix washable paint with play sand to really see and feel texture in our artwork. We use both paint brushes and their little fingers to understand how art can be seen, as well as felt.
#3 Stress Relief (Line, Color, Shape)
Thanks to Shazia Siddiqi, Board Certified Art Therapist, Licensed Professional Counselor, and founder/owner at Let’s Art About It. Let’s Art About It provides a safe and healthy space to express, explore, and understand emotions, develop fresh perspectives, and practice new patterns that lead to personal and professional wellness and growth. Shazia shared an excerpt from the Stress Relief with Art and Dance Movement course:
This is an activity anyone can all do at home with just a pen or pencil and a scrap paper, and can help with finding calm when feeling overwhelmed.
Make a scribble to represent your stress, anxiety, confusion, and any other overwhelming feeling you may be having. Next, create calming designs in the spaces within your scribble (or simply just color them in!). If you have other supplies readily available at home, like crayons, or tiny things that could be collaged into the spaces, feel free to use those as well if you choose. Once you’re done, stand up and create some movements that represent your scribble, followed my movements that represent your pockets of calm. While you’re doing this exercise, think of ways you can create spaces of calm and beauty in your day during this time of stress and uncertainty.
#4 Geometric Angles (Color, Shape, Value)
Thanks to Dr. Sharon Jones, Founder of Dottie Rose Foundation, and her awesome son Ethan, age 9. They shared:
Create an abstract piece of art using geometric shapes and learning angles. Include acute, right, and obtuse angles and measure using a protractor to help name the piece, as the most common degree can name it! “This is 90 Degrees.”
Using the color wheel, use complimentary colors and add in value and shade to add depth. You can use canvas, paper, or any other material!
#5 Exploring Art as a 2-Year-Old
Thanks to Becca Lui, a travel and lifestyle mom blogger at MakingDaysCount.com. Becca writes:
I am excited to share with you one of the art projects I did with my almost 2 year old daughter.
Here is the fun hands-on project where she explored color! Materials You will need include:
• Cardstock or construction paper
• Foam brush
• Different washable paints (colored)
• Painter’s tape
1. Prep Your Painting Station and Child – First, decide where you want your child to paint. If it is at the dinner table, put your paper on the table and tape it down with painter’s tape. Also, put a smock or an oversized old adult t-shirt to avoid paint getting on their clothes.
2. Start by putting one drop of paint – Put a tiny drop of paint randomly on the paper. Model to your toddler how to use the foam brush to spread out the paint. You can start with brushing up and down. You can also introduce the name of the color to your toddler. When they have a rough idea of how to brush the paint up and down the paper, you can proceed to the next step.
3. Slowly add more colors to the paper – Add the other paint colors on random parts of the paper. Encourage your child to see what happens when they mix the colors together.
4. Wait for the paper to dry– The fun part of this art project is that you do not need to fill the entire paper. Your toddler can decide when they are done. When they are done, hang the paper up or flat to dry. Now, you’ll have a beautiful masterpiece and they have some fun exploring color.
A side note: If parents want the art piece to match their home decor, they can choose certain colors that are in the palette or complimentary to the home decor. However, this is not necessary as this is a fun exploration activity for the 2 year old.