Early Lit Bits: Learning with Crafts — Water Painting

Water Painting

Here’s a great way to beat the heat of summer and help your child learn to read and write at the same time. The trigger action of a squirt bottle and working on a vertical surface help strengthen the hand muscles young children will use when they learn to write later on. And as an added bonus, you’ll have the cleanest fence on the block in no time at all!

  • Plastic beach bucket (with handle is best)
  • Old paintbrushes, paint rollers and trays or squirt bottles (clean)
  • Water

To Use:

Fill the bucket with water and have children “paint” a wooden fence, brick wall or driveway with the water. Talk about how the water changes the color of the surface they are painting and how as the water dries, the surface changes back to its original color. Have the children paint their names.
Other Ideas:

Bring an art easel outside. Let children paint with real paint without worrying about the mess. Set up a clothesline in the yard for drying and displaying artwork. Encourage children to autograph their artwork. Look at pictures of famous art on the Internet or in a book and talk about how artists sign their names on their artwork.

This article originally appeared in our Early Lit Bits eNewsletter. Read the most recent issue online or sign up to receive this monthly update highlighting early literacy tips and resources for parents and caregivers.


Written by Sheri


Sheri is the Kent District Library ILS & Electronic Resources Coordinator. She loves KDL’s eBook collection and her NOOK because they allow her to fit a whole stack of books in her purse to take with her wherever she goes.

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