Painting for toddlers is fun, but it can get pretty messy. It doesn’t have to be stressful. So when should we introduce paint to toddlers?
I introduced painting to my daughter when she was 18 months old. She was big enough to understand not to eat paint. She knew her colors too so it was fun for her to say the colors as she paint. My 15 month old son still eats everything so I will introduce paint to him later.
Painting is a really fun activity for my daughter and she always want to paint. The only negative thing about painting is that it is messy. Paint gets on her hands, face, clothes, and table.
(My daughter at 18 months old painting for the first time)
What type of paint are good?
Definitely washable and tempera paints! Tempera paints are non-toxic and it comes off clothes easily. You would want to avoid acrylic paints since it is not washable and it would not come off clothes. I had this happened before when she used my paints instead of hers.
Water color painting is really fun although it can get messy if your toddler isn’t careful. It is best to use water color paper or card stock paper. I introduced water color to my daughter at age 3. She was able to understand that she has to dip/wash her brush in the water then get a color to paint. As you can see in her palette, she mixed some colors already. After painting, you can clean the paint by removing the mix colors with a wet paper towel. She did good by not making a mess or spilling the water and had fun painting. (She was playing “house” earlier in the background)
There will be days when your toddlers want to paint, but you don’t feel like cleaning up. Here’s an idea that I found on pinterest. It’s mess free paint! Basically you put some paint in a ziploc bag and let your kids paint by moving the paint around.
My daughter prefers to paint with a brush on paper though so I’ll just have to clean up after.
Hopefully these tips are helpful. Paints can get messy, but remember to have fun!