11 Fun Watercolor Projects for Kids

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Today I'm looking back at the watercolor projects we've done over the past couple of years. So many! Besides just plain painting, that is, which we've also done plenty of. Watercolors are easily one of my top favorite art materials for little kids!

We use liquid watercolorsand watercolors in tubes, as well as the good ole watercolor cakes. Liquid watercolors are my favorite, but they all work well. For paper, we generally order watercolor paperfrom Discount School Supply, which is relatively inexpensive. You can also use mat board remnants from frame shops (free!) or the matte side of poster board (super cheap).

Here are the watercolor art projects:

Fun Watercolor Projects for Kids

Pictured above (clockwise from upper left) are various watercolor resists:


Above are the summery flowers and butterflies:


And other extra fun things to do with watercolors:

What else? I'd love to hear about other ways you use watercolors! I'm always looking for new ideas to try. As you can see (as if you didn't know already!), I am an art project junkie. New projects and new materials make me so happy!

This is one of a series of themed round-up posts on great art activities we've enjoyed at The Artful Parent. I've also done round-ups on tempera paint ideas, on felt boards, on suncatchers and stained glass, on printmaking for kids, on homemade art materials, and on nature art ideas.

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Note: I am now a Discount School Supply affiliate and some links in this post may be affiliate links. If you follow a link and place a purchase, I will receive a small percentage of the sales price from Discount School Supply and will send you virtual hugs.

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  1. tasha says

    At your inspiration, we got the liquid watercolors. And we are addicted. As an artist, I am hopelessly inspired by my son’s art. Sometimes, I sit near and try to leach off of his vibe, in hopes of capturing that childish, innocent, pure way of creating without the trappings of adulthood, intellect, and an adult brain. He’s used the liquid watercolors on canvas, and his works blow my mind. It’s crazy how he can start with a few colors, and then it transforms entirely by the end. Its the kind of art I wish I could create!

  2. Jennifer says

    I recently tried out “color stories” with my boys (5.5 and 2). And will be trying it out with my art group today. You get a sheet of paper completely wet (dip it in a pan of water, or paint sheet with a large brush).
    Then you plant a “seed” of an idea of what’s going to happen by saying something like:
    “Blue and Red are going to work magic on each other today.”
    “I wonder what Yellow is going to tell Blue?”
    Then you give them a couple of primary colors, and brush, and let them explore the blending of the colors.”
    I liked the idea of introducing mixing colors this way. I got this the idea from a book called Painting with Children by Brunhild Muller. Brunhild is a strong advocate of liquid watercolors — which I had yet to try — but now Love.
    Beyond blending the primary colors, she also suggests does “stories” like,
    “Today Blue wants to be alone.” (Let them explore blue as blue.)
    “Two red brothers made a bet, who would be the stronger yet?” (using two different kinds of red)
    “Blue, Yellow and Orange are going to play together.”
    “Blue has a birthday.” (start with blue and then invite other guests)
    Brunhild also likes using poems about color to inspire children.

  3. says

    We have done several of the art projects you have listed, so thank you for the inspiration.
    Had a question for you regarding the rubber cement and watercolors project, though…for some reason, when we tried this, it did not work for us.
    Not sure what I did wrong…
    We followed the directions, but it took longer for each step to dry, as it was really humid when we tried this.
    When the paint had dried over the rubber cement swirls and we tried to peel the rubber cement off, it did not seem to peel. I had to end up digging it off and it did not get the same effect.
    Do you think that maybe it could be the brand of paint, rubber cement, or paper or maybe the humidity? Or are there certain brands you recommend?
    I used Elmer’s rubber cement, Crayola watercolors, and artists’ watercolor drawing paper. All of our supplies were brand new to our home, although who knows how long they sat on the shelves.
    Would love to try this with my sons again.
    My sons chose to do some watercolor work today using watercolor ink paint pens and they loved it.
    Well, thanks for your awesome blog and your wonderful ideas!

  4. says

    Let’s see. The rubber cement doesn’t really “peel off”. You have to rub it with your thumb or something and then it starts balling up and rubs/peels off. Unless maybe there really was a problem with your rubber cement and humidity or whatever. I’d say all your supplies sound find. We used elmers rubber cement as well. Try it again and rub it off instead of trying to peel it off. Let me know how it goes!

  5. Hannah Cousino says

    We just did a project this evening…we cut up old watercolor paintings and used the pieces to make a picture. We only did the cutting tonight, so I’m not sure how it’ll turn out…but the pieces are really attractive! I’m excited to finish, and to do more!

  6. says

    Great pictures and instructions! I love the calm, sweet, focused, engaged looks that you captured! This is what kids need! I’m a fan!
    Jane & StickFiggy

  7. says

    I too have the Waldorf style one!
    Along with one called “Little blue and Little Yellow”. A sweet story for little ones about blending colors!

  8. says

    Thank you so much for the link to Discount School Supply! I not only found watercolor paper for a fraction of the cost of Michael’s (that I just went to yesterday and went pale at the price of watercolor paper before leaving), I found many other things we’re going to love having too. Thanks again!

  9. says

    I love how you get your kids involved in art. I think that it’s a great way for kids to express themselves in a healthy matter. You go girl.

  10. says

    Parents get angry when they watch their kids get messy with colors at that time if they will watch these paintings drawn by their kids then they will forget about their anger.