The leaves are changing colors. That means it’s time for fall art activities! I’m tiring from the same old projects (they were fun, but there’s only so many times that you can make a leaf wreath before you want to poke your eyes out with the stems). So, I tried to get creative.
What happened? I major flub. I’ve taught children’s art programs for over a decade and have done plenty of projects with my own child. That said, sometimes what sounds like a fantastic idea in my head ends up far less than fabulous in reality. My idea—use non-colorfast tissue paper to dye fall leaves brilliant hues. Yes, I know that they come off of the trees with all the beauty that nature has to offer. But, sometimes they are more of a yucky brown shade. Case in point, here’s what I found in my front yard:
I gingerly placed each leaf on a piece of paper and add bold tissue on top. I used a water-soaked paper towel to drip the water on.
It was a no-go. While some of the color stuck, most rolled off onto the paper.
I tried soaking the leaves in a mix of food coloring and water.
Then I looked at my fingers. The tell-tale signs of tissue paper dye were left behind. “Oh, I wish that there was some way to water color paint with tissue paper without using a brush or staining my hands,” I thought. Then it dawned on me: The color rolled right off the leaf. What a perfect hands-paper barrier. So, if you want to try tissue paper water colors with your child, but aren’t particularly interested in staining her fingers, give this a try. As a bonus, it’s a fun fall-themed project. I added another step, and used this art exploration as a crayon-resist project.
Here’s What You’ll Need:
· Fall leaves
· White card stock paper
· Tissue paper – Only use tissue that bleeds. Colorfast paper won’t work.
· Wet paper towels
· A white oil pastel crayon
Here’s What to Do:
1. Draw a fall design (such as a leaf or pumpkin) onto the paper with the white oil pastel.
2. Place the tissue on the paper.
3. Squeeze the wet paper towel over the tissue.
4. Spread the colorful water around using the leaf. It’s like your child is finger painting with water colors – minus the messy hands.
When the art-making is all done, try talking about what your child made and how she did it. This allows her to reflect on her artwork and even get in a science lesson or two. Ask open-ended questions such as:
· Where did the colors in the water come from?
· Why do you think the leaf protected your hand from the water colors?
· Do you still see the crayon drawing? Why do you think the paint didn’t stick to it?
Are you looking for more leaf projects? Follow my fall Pinterest board for ideas!Follow Mini Monets and Mommies's board Fall Activities for Kids on Pinterest.