Top 10 Favorite Art Activities for Kids

Our Top 10 All-Time Favorite Art Activities for Kids

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Top 10 Favorite Art Activities for Kids

​For years now, I’ve been working on this list of favorite art activities for kids. Every time we try a new art activity, or even revisit an old favorite, it gets measured against the list in my head.

To get included on my list of favorite and best art activities, it needs to fit the following criteria:

  • The process is fun and open-ended
  • It’s easy to do
  • It’s the kind of activity that kids want to do over and over again
  • Plus, the end result looks pretty great, too

Who wouldn’t want to do those activities?! So, today, I’m going to share my top 10 list with you.

10 Tried-and-True Favorite Art Activities for Kids

Raised Salt Painting Squiggles

#1. Raised salt painting 

This is an all-time favorite kids art activity that is loved by all ages from toddlers on up. Plus it uses materials you already have! Glue, salt, and either liquid watercolor paint or food coloring.

Oil Pastel Painting with Kids

#2. Oil pastel painting

Combine the vibrant colors and smooth application of oil pastels with baby oil for a painting effect.

Nature Art for Kids - Flower Suncatchers

#3. Nature suncatchers 

Make beautiful flower or leaf suncatchers to hang in the window! This spring or summer craft uses a paper plate as the frame for a nature suncatcher that anyone can make.

Melted Crayon Art on Canvas

#4. Watercolor resist 

Try melting crayons art on canvas panels then add watercolors for a vibrant watercolor resist artwork. This art project is equally great for kids and adults.

Note :: Here are 6 more great watercolor resist techniques to try.

A Back and Forth Drawing Game for Kids

#5. The back-and-forth drawing game 

A drawing game for kids or kids and adults that allows each person to build off of the previous persons drawings. Low key yet interactive, this back-and-forth drawing game is a fun way to connect through creativity. It also makes a good waiting game at restaurants and doctor’s offices.

DIY Marbled Paper with Shaving Cream and Watercolors

#6. Shaving cream marbling 

The best, easiest, and cheapest DIY marbled paper is done with shaving cream marbling. This is one of our all-time favorite art activities.

DIY Salt Puffy Paint

#7. Salt puffy paint 

How to make and use DIY salt puffy paint with kids. This is a tried-and-true favorite process art material and technique for children of all ages.

15 Creative Playdough Ideas for Kids

#8. Playdough modeling and play 

More than 15 creative playdough ideas for kids, including making fantastical creatures, using poke-ins, trying playdough mats, forming letters, and pretend play.

Marble Painting for Kids

#9. Marble painting 

Marble painting for kids is an easy and fun action art activity that results in a wonderfully abstract work of art. You can also do this with balls, water balloons, and more!

Spin Painting with Kids

#10. Spin painting

Spin painting is a favorite kids art activity that can be done with a salad spinner or with a kids spin art machine. A comparison of the two methods plus ideas for what to do with all the spin art.

How about you? What’s on your list of top 10 all-time favorite art activities for kids?

By the way, if there are some art activities on the list above that you haven’t tried yet, I promise you they are good ones that are worth exploring with your kiddos. And if there’s something on that list that you have done, perhaps it’s time to revisit it?

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Top 10 All Time Favorite Art Activities for Kids

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15 Comments

  • Reply
    Becky
    March 1, 2017 at 11:46 am

    I have a question, when making puffy paint instead of using regular flour could you use some other glutin free flour? My granddaughter can’t be around glutin.

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      March 2, 2017 at 8:28 am

      Probably, Becky. Why don’t you give it a try and see how it works? I haven’t tried it myself but I would love to hear back from you if you test it out.

  • Reply
    Kirsten
    March 2, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    I have such fond memories of marble painting as a little kid! Our kids love the salt painting, we have done it several times this year. One other painting activity I love it taking a large piece of paper, folding in half, and on one half, either tracing a design in pencil (just a doodle, or maybe half a heart or butterfly), or freehand drizzle tempura paint in an abstract design–then folding in half for a Rorschach effect. I did this for hours at a time as a child, and was always delighted with how the drips and drizzles transformed into mirror-image abstract art. Especially fun when using primary colors, or a combo or colors with white, and seeing how the colors blend!

  • Reply
    Sandra Cobain
    April 6, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    What a fabulous list of art ideas! My girls absolutely love getting their hands dirty, so perhaps it’s time to try out some shaving cream marbling, eh?! Thanks for sharing! :)

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      April 7, 2017 at 12:34 pm

      So glad you like the list, Sandra! And yes, time to try some shaving cream marbling! :)

  • Reply
    Lynda Way
    July 28, 2017 at 6:52 am

    I went through your posts and those were amazing! Point numbers 3,4,& 5 were really interesting, that made me like the post.

  • Reply
    daysen
    May 14, 2018 at 10:40 am

    I don’t like anything about it

    • Reply
      Larry
      June 5, 2018 at 1:34 pm

      Hey “Dazed”en. If you don’t like it you should keep your worthless comments to yourself. I just happened along and found this and was getting some great ideas then I came along your comments. I’ll bet people just love hanging out with you.
      Maybe it was you that wrecked the projects for the kids.
      Thank you to the artful parent for taking time out of your day to help us that you don’t even know. I for one appreciate the effort : )

  • Reply
    daysen
    May 14, 2018 at 10:41 am

    booooooo

  • Reply
    Helena
    July 9, 2018 at 6:50 pm

    Greeting from Indonesia.

    Lots of fun to try. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Geraldine
    July 16, 2018 at 9:13 am

    We also love the shaving cream marbling and spin art. We love the oil resist painting, watercolor spray painting, sand casting, and art hats! I follow your page, read your books from cover to cover, and refer everyone I know here. Thank you for your efforts in creating easy instructionals for parents.

    Your fan,
    Geraldine

  • Reply
    Catherine Watts
    January 22, 2019 at 8:04 pm

    These art activities are truly fun to do with kids. It is important to nurture a child’s creativity. If you want to teach them these art activities, you should provide them with tools. Check out our store: https://hathart.com/shop/.

  • Reply
    Sage
    April 13, 2019 at 6:38 am

    Love the list. Great fun stuff for kids. Thanks for sharing.
    Cheers
    Sage

  • Reply
    Kirsten Wale
    September 8, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    I always suggest parents in my school to get these children involve in physical activities and we arrange art competition every month to engage kids in activities i got some new ideas from post i will try to get approval on them .

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