Little Hands Art: Ball Painting


This summer, I started a bi-monthly art program for toddlers. It alternated with a weekly drop-in open play program. Little Hands Art was advertised for toddlers ages 2-4 with an adult caregiver. Registration was required and our programming blurb requested that toddlers come wearing clothes they could get messy in.

We did ball painting two ways. One: ping-pong balls in our blue trays. Two: big balls in a large storage container. I liked doing it two ways because one way gave the child a chance to do it themselves and the other way allowed parents to join in on the shaking fun!

First they either dropped their ball or painted their ball:

Then came shaking it around until they had created a masterpiece:

And finally their turn at the big ball bin:

Take-aways from this session:

1. Always have paintbrushes! Originally kids were going to dip their balls into the paint and just roll it around but many of them balked about getting their fingers dirty. Sometimes toddlers aren’t down for a sensory experience!

2. Do not use balls that have holes in them because you can’t wash them without risking mold growing inside. 😦 I’ll have to buy some new balls for open play group later on this year.

Kelsey from Library Bonanza, Heather from Little Literacy Librarian, and I are presenting a program at Illinois Library Association Conference THIS THURSDAY all about art with small people! You’ll be seeing a lot of art posts this week — enjoy!

4 comments on “Little Hands Art: Ball Painting

  1. Nora
    October 21, 2015 at 10:13 am #

    After reading your posts this week, you have inspired me to give this program idea a whirl this summer. Thanks!

    • Katie
      June 7, 2016 at 12:27 pm #

      Hope it goes well!


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