I wanted to do some cool art stuff with the kids and I thought something that focusing on painting would be cool. I envisioned doing some really cool cave paintings. I didn’t think cave painting would take long enough to fill a whole program so I also planned some painting with ping pong balls where you put paint and a ball in a box and shake it up. But suddenly I had 30 people registered and a full program and I didn’t feel like getting shoe boxes for everyone so I improvised a bit.
I wasn’t seeking it out but a few weeks before the program I ran across a mud paint recipe on pinterest and thought that would be perfect for cave painting. I bought a roll of brown paper off amazon, though if you didn’t want to pay for paper you could save any that come in shipping boxes to use as well.
I split the cave painting into two parts. For the first part I ended up covering a whole wall in the brown paper and turning the lights down so they were almost off. I then projecting a campfire video onto the opposite wall to have the right atmosphere and give hem some light to paint by. As they came in the room I gave everyone a random color of mud paint to paint an outline of their hand on the “cave wall”. I really liked that this was basically a big, communal piece of art. Some of the kids said they were “scared” though no one seemed too upset so I think I hit that perfect mix of scary and fun. Then we went to the next room and everyone got a large sheet of brown paper to paint on their own “wall”.
As for the pingpong ball painting I had the bright idea to use a 15 foot roll of paper I had at home to make a communal painting that was also kind of a game. Everyone got a container of thin paint, a ping pong ball, and a straw. They dipped the ping pong ball in the paint and then blew it around with the straw. I also found some project paper that was the perfect size for families to do the activity and take it home.
This was a really cool program and the spots were full a week before the program! I would love to do this again but I think I would make cave painting its own program.
Activity 1: Painting with Ping Pong Balls
Activity 2: Cave Painting