Looking for process art ideas? Check out this fun variety of creative art ideas for preschoolers!
If you follow many blogs, you’ve no doubt heard the debate between process art and crafts. What’s the difference?
Simply put, a process art project is one where it’s all about the process. A group of children completing the same project will have quite different results. The important thing is what they learn while they’re creating the art.
A craft, however, is typically one in which there is one way to do the project. What results may be a bulletin board of nearly identical projects.
The longer I teach my children at home, the more often I find us doing process art instead of crafts. While we do enjoy the occasional craft, I like the freedom that process art gives my children. And here’s the bonus: not only do they get the chance to explore different media and be creative, but I also have less to set up! Plus, when we use washable paints and newspaper, the mess is minimal.
Today I’d like to share a collection of 26 different process art activities: one for each letter of the alphabet!
A – Apple stamping – This is a classic process art activity that’s easy to set up and do. A tip: If the apple is too slippery for your child, stick a fork in it and have him use the fork to lift and press the apple.
B – Bubble painting – When we saw this amazing bubble painting project from Housing A Forest, we had to give it a try. My kids loved it and produced some lovely artwork! This activity is for kids who know how to blow through a straw and not just in. ;).
C – Cardboard comb painting – We had a lot of fun with this cardboard comb painting idea from Learn with Play at Home. I recommend fingerpaint and fingerpainting paper. It makes it extra fun to slide that comb!
D –Eye dropper painting – My three-year-old had so much fun doing this eye dropper painting from Laughing Kids Learn. He asked for a new paper towel at least three different times.
E – Easter egg prints – It doesn’t get simpler than this. Just pull your plastic eggs apart and have your child dip them in paint to make prints.
F – Paint on foil – Painting on aluminum foil is very different from painting on paper. Visit Teaching 2 and 3 Year Olds to learn what they used instead of paintbrushes.
G- Gear painting – Fun-a-Day attached paintbrush to toy gears, dipped them in paint, and got a really cool effect.
H – Hole punch art – I love how this project from Learn with Play at Home combines fine motor and art. This one is on our list to try!
I – Ice painting – This ice painting idea is another fun project from Teaching 2 and 3 Year Olds. It’s so easy to prepare, and it gives kids a chance to learn to use water colors.
J – Paint with Jell-O – For a fun painting activity that smells amazing, try painting with Jell-O powder and water, like they did at Fun-a-Day.
K – Paint with Kool-Aid – Have you ever mixed up a batch of Kool-Aid paint?
L – Paint with Legos – Lego printing is a simple activity, and washable tempera paint rinses right off. Check it out at Kids Activities Blog.
M – Play dough monsters – Just grab a ball of play dough and props to make some silly monsters. We made ours with toothpicks and Mr. Potato Head parts. Check out the play dough monsters at The Imagination Tree.
N – Noodle painting – Playing with cooked noodles is so much fun. Why not paint them like they did at Teach Preschool?
O – Orange stamping – We’ve done this a few times, and I love that you can save the fruit before you create.
P – Pom pom painting – My preschoolers have enjoyed seeing what they can create with a pom pom clipped in a clothespin and dipped in paint. Learn more at Fantastic Fun and Learning.
Q – Paper quilt – For process art that doesn’t involve painting, give kids their own shapes and encourage them to glue down a paper quilt. Check out this activity at Creative Connections for Kids.
R – Rainbow puffy clouds – It’s sensory and art combined!
S – Draw on sandpaper with chalk – This one’s my favorite because it’s simple yet unique (and low mess, hurray!).
T – Truck track painting – Painting with toys was my three-year-old’s favorite activity for months. I’m sure he’d love making truck tracks too, like they did at Learn Play Imagine.
U – Craft drawer umbrella – Have your child cut out a simple umbrella silhouette (or do it for him). Then pull out random supplies and watch him create a wild and wacky umbrella.
V – Paint and erupt volcano – You or your child can build this volcano from Fun at Home with Kids. After it dries for a few days and your child paints it, add dish soap and vinegar and watch it erupt!
W – Water paint on chalkboard – Crazy, but if I give my kids a yogurt container with an inch of water in it and a paintbrush, they can be busying painting on our chalkboard for a good 30 minutes. At The Imagination Tree they color with chalk first and then paint over it.
X – Xylophone painting – You may have thought that there’s no process art for letter X, but think again! Teach Preschool created these xylophone mallets for a xylophone painting activity. Brilliant!
Y – Yarn painting – This was a two-day project, but completely worth the effort! We followed this yarn painting tutorial at The Artful Parent.
Z – Zebra marble painting – Whether or not you use the printable zebra pattern, you’ve still got some process art when you mix black food coloring with shaving cream.
Loved this very helpful. I will use some of these ideas in my class! Thank you very much.
Heather Groth, Customer Support
Wonderful! We love to hear that!
Thank you for your wonderful resources! I do parent/ child interaction classes for toddlers and pre school aged kids. These ideas are great for take home art projects. Thank you gain for your wonderful work and ideas!
You’re very welcome, Mario!
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You’re very welcome!
Thanks for sharing all of these wonderful resources! I work at a daycare and i will definitely be using several of these great ideas! I especially like the idea of painting with cooked noodles. We have used cooked noodles in a sensory table before, but never to paint with. Thanks for the idea!
The kids you care for will have so much fun with these activities, Kaitlyn! Thanks so much for visiting. 🙂