Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Paint Skiing































Last summer in the back and forth of a friendly marble painting one-upsmanship between the children of Woodland Park and Jenny's kids Down Under, we tried this particular "art" project indoors. The idea was to spread a large piece of paper on the floor, pour paint on it, position ourselves around the paper, then to kick a ball back and forth through the paint creating a super-dooper sized marble painting. Back then, we had to do it indoors given that our gym floor was the only large flat space we had, making it an exceedingly messy endeavor. I've been looking forward to giving it a go in our new outdoor classroom where I hoped the mess would at least be easier to clean up.


I decided to forego the paper this time and paint directly on the tarp, starting with a healthy does of pink and turquoise tempera paint.


Right away, we found that the ball tended to get stuck in the thick paint atop such an uneven surface.


But we persevered gamely for a time, taking turns wading out into the paint to retrieve the inert ball and returning it to the edges where it could be kicked again, get stuck again, then be retrieved again.


It went on that way for several minutes until someone, inevitably, took a seat in the stuff.


After that, the ball sort of became an unnecessary appendage as the children, at least the ones unintimidated by the prospects of getting messy, experimented with walking, sliding, and otherwise full-body painting on the very slippery surface.


Lachlan called it "paint skiing."








Charlie L. and Marcus' mom Shelly, a veteran of Woodland Park remarked, "I think this is the messiest thing we've ever done," which, you know, is saying something. 



Then while parents helped kids wash off their skin, and change their clothes (Woodland Park children are expected to bring at least one change of clothing each day), I hosed the tarp down, which attracted a different set of kids to come horse around on the tarp.



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17 comments:

Barbara Zaborowski said...

I read one time of a teacher who told her parents to go to Goodwill, get five outfits, label them "Monday" through "Friday" and stop worrying about the kids getting dirty. I love it!

Juliet Robertson said...

That is one of the nicest uses I have seen for blue tarp. The hosing down is definitely the icing on the cake. Recently I acquired a transparent tarp which might be interesting in that the children can see the action and use it afterwards in other ways...hmm, you've got me thinking there. another recent piece of artwork I've seen involves putting masking tape on a big sheet and then painting over it. Afterwards the masking tape is removed and there's nice contrast between the blank strips and the paint work.

Heidi Butkus said...

That post just made me giggle and giggle. Nice one, teacher Tom!!! Love it! Oh, where is the video camera when you need it!!!!
Heidi Butkus

Messy Kids said...

Are your parents really that cool about clothes? I worked at a play based school and despite the disclaimer of "bring extra clothes, your child may get messy" or what ever, parent's still griped. Even one of the teachers I worked with whose daughter was in my class used to complain when her daughter got paint on her clothes. I used to tell her, "well, you know the guidelines, don't send her in nice clothes!"

Anyway, I love the tarp idea. So much fun and exploration going on there. It's great! Once again, I wish I lived in Seattle and could work at your school!

Barbara Gruener said...

This might very well be the bravest activity I've seen in my 27 years of education! I admire and applaud your creativity and courage (from afar, of course!!).

Barbara
corneroncharacter.blogspot.com

Shannon said...

I always love to read about all the messy activities you are able to provide for the kids. This reminds me of when I used to work with infants and we blocked off a section of the room, put paper on the floor, stripped the babies down to their diapers and let them go to it with brushes and paint. Mostly they painted on themselves and they had a great time. This seems like a great way to turn that into a preschool experience. Thanks for sharing.

Scott said...

Full body painting! I like it.

TwosTimesTwelve said...

We recently did something similar though we just used large pieces of poster board. Most of the kids walked through it or used their hands to rub the paint all over their entire bodies. We dressed accordingly in our swim suits and had the hose going. The tarp looks fun though, that may be my next big messy project (after fly swatter painting which is already on our summertime list).

MaryAnn said...

I'm laughing and laughing... thank you for this great post today.

Anonymous said...

Love the idea of using the tarp. Paper, cardboard inevitably rip and only really allow for one set of children to use it!
Recently did something similar with my own 17 month old twins which included homemade finger paint in the bath (we have a big bath!) awesome for clean up!

Kierna C said...

Brilliant - I did this once on a big bed sheet - found paper way too slippy. The class I did this with are now 7 & when they call by the nursery they still talk about 'the day we painted with our feet' - hmmmm might have to revive this one!

Educational Worksheets said...

Lovely pictures and great artwork by kids. LOL :)

kristin @ preschool daze said...

just catching up here....

i may have to plan a one day preschool experience this summer....just for this.

awesome.

Electrician Sutherland Shire said...

so cute

Electrician Peakhurst said...

Very lovely pics....

peter said...

Very wonderful pictures. I really like the second one.

Online 3rd-Grade-Math-Games for Kids

glass pool said...

Nice one

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