A Jan Brett Inspired Winter Art Activity

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Winter Art Project Inspired by Jan Brett

Hi I’m Kristina from Toddler Approved and I am excited to share a favorite book-themed winter art activity with you today.

I love Jean’s blog and her posts are constantly inspiring me to be a more creative mom. I find as winter begins and we all get a little stir-crazy indoors, I need a gazillion ideas to keep myself (and the kiddos) from getting too bored.

I hope this ends up being a fun one you decide to try.

I have a toddler and a preschooler and like to come up with art experiences that we can all have together… otherwise the baby is wreaking havoc all over.

The Mitten by Jan BrettWe love Jan Brett’s book The Mitten, so we decided to create some of our own mittens and then use them to play a game inspired by the book.

To create the mittens we used two different painting techniques: crayon resist painting and baggie painting.

The baggie painting technique is perfect for little toddlers who might not be too trustworthy with paint yet (mine eats it).

Kids Winter Art Project Inspired by Jan Brett

Jan Brett Inspired Winter Art Activity

Materials Needed:

  • cardstock
  • watercolor paint (or watered down tempera)
  • pencil
  • pen
  • scissors
  • crayons
  • ziploc baggies
  • paint brush
  • cup of water
  • two copies of Jan Brett’s Mitten animals template (shrunk)

Directions for the Jan Brett-Inspired Winter Art Activity ::

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

1. Trace your child’s hands several times to make mittens. We made 8 mitten sets since there are 8 animals in The Mitten.

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

2. Trace over your mittens with a marker (optional) and then cut them out.

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

3. Cover some of the mittens with crayons and then paint on top of them.

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

4. Put paint in a ziploc bag and put some of the paper mittens inside. Close the bag and then let your little one move the paint around to cover the mittens.

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

5. Take the mittens out after a minute of “painting” and let them dry (if you leave them in too long they get too moist and start ripping).

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

6. Once all the mitten pairs are dry, read Jan Brett’s book The Mitten and write the names of each animal on the back of one pair and glue the picture of the animal on the other pair.

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

7. Have your little ones hide the mittens all around your house and then work together to try and find them all!

Winter Art Activity for Toddlers

8. Match the pairs as you find them! We loved talking about colors, animal names, letters, and trying to “read” the animal names by looking at the beginning and ending letters.

This activity provided hours of fun for us on a rainy day.

Kristina Toddler ApprovedI’m Kristina, a mom of two (a preschooler and a toddler) and a former Special Education teacher for children with communication disabilities. I write about our creative explorations over at Toddler Approved. I blog alongside one of my best friends and we love sharing ideas with each other and our readers. My main interest is to find ways to make life a little more fun and creative. I also love to embed language learning into everything that we do.

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  1. says

    That looks like fun! We love that book too — one of my kids nursery school teachers actually had a huge “mitten” that one of the parents knitted so all the kids could pretend to be animals and climb in together. Fun times. :)

  2. says

    That is the coolest idea ever Molly! I was thinking it would be fun to make a big mitten out of felt or something and then stick paper or felt animals in it as they told the story… but your this sounds even better! How fun!

  3. Lori N says

    We are huge fans of Jan Brett and this book is one of our favorites. I love the bag painting idea. My boys love to paint, but whatever the project, my 3 yr old usually ends up painting himself and then trying to paint his big brother. I am going to introduce him to bag painting this week!

  4. says

    I would love to hear how it turns out Lori. My 1 yr old daughter loves to get paint everywhere and so does her brother… which is sometimes fun, but sometimes the baggie painting is a different alternative (and less paint gets everywhere) :)

  5. says

    Not all the kids together but a few at a time. It is pretty big, it was made with big chunky white yarn with a nice stretch. I don’t know who did it, the teacher said it was years ago but it was such fun for the kids! :)

  6. says

    Love this project so much – cannot wait to try it! When I used to teach, we used our body sock as the mitten for the children to all climb in. It was hysterical and they loved it!