Mini Monets and Mommies: Chalk Finger Paint with Monet's Water Lilies

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Chalk Finger Paint with Monet's Water Lilies

What do chalk paint, a famous artist and kid-created art have in common? Well, you can find them all here in this Impressionist Monet’s Water Lilies finger paint art exploration!

Monet painting
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Monet is one of my favorite artists. Back when I was working as a museum arts educator, taking the children to see his Water Lilies was always a treat. Maybe it had something to do with the colors, the brush strokes or the sheer size of the work, but the kids were always drawn to it. With that in mind, I’m also kind of a fan of having kids make some of their own Monet’s Water Lilies-inspired art.

Let’s start with the painting itself. If you don’t have the opportunity to look at the real thing (and plenty of us don’t), you can just as easily use a reproduction. Ok, so you won’t get the full-on texture feel of the work. But, your child will still get the chance to see the famous artwork. If you’re not exactly sure how to get started looking at art with your child, I like to begin with a few open-ended questions. For example:

·        What do you think is going on in this painting?

·        What do you see?

·        Why do you think the artists used these colors?

·        How do you think the artist made this?

·        How could you make an artwork like this?

Now that you’ve take a look at the artwork, it’s time to move on to the art-making…

Let’s start with the Impressionist DIY chalk finger paint. There are two ways to do this. For either, you’ll only need two ingredients: Colorful chalk and petroleum jelly. Ok, so you’ll also need plastic baggies for one of the options.

Put the chalk in the baggies, tie/seal them up and smash away. I used the back of a wooden spoon, but your child can come up with her own creative way to crush the chalk into bits (this promotes problem-solving and critical-thinking skills).

Kids' art
When the chalk is smashed, mix in the jelly (the more you put in the lighter the color). Now you’re little artist is ready to finger paint. Yay!

DIY paint
OR, try this option:

1. Draw with the chalk on white card stock paper. Start with a blue, creating a pond of water.

Monet project
2. Add green lily pads, pink, purple, yellow (and other colors) flowers and draw in a few shaded or highlighted areas with different hues of chalk.

Impressionist art
3. Scoop some petroleum jelly out. Your child can use her fingers to spread the jelly over the chalk, smudging and smearing it. Add more chalk drawing (and jelly) as needed.

Children's paint
There’s no ‘right’ way to do this art activity. Let your child experiment and explore with the chalk and jelly, discovering how to make the colors spread or how to make textures.

What was that? Did you just ask about more Monet art for kids? Sure, no problem! If your child enjoyed this one, try a Monet…

Clay art

Shaving cream Water Lilies
Water Lilies

Cupcake (yes, cupcake)
Baking with kids

Monet's art

Looking for more activities, but with different famous artists? Follow my Pinterest board for ideas!
Follow Mini Monets and Mommies's board Famous Artist Kids' Activities on Pinterest.


  1. So many beautiful Monet inspired crafts - love the cup cake idea too!

  2. What a great idea, might have to try this with my son! Thanks for the inspiration :) (ToddlerFunFriday)

  3. This is such a great idea. I might try this with my class next year.

  4. What a fun art technique! I should try this with my kids :) Thanks for sharing on #ToddlerFunFriday

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