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Winter-themed Process Art Activities for Preschoolers

Jan 10, 2024    |   Winter

Process art activities are a favorite in many early childhood programs. Process art projects emphasize playful exploration and de-emphasize a defined end product, encouraging children to create by using artistic materials in new ways. The winter months offer an opportunity for children to enjoy process art activities that draw upon the colors and textures associated with winter weather.

Ice-painted Igloos 

This winter-themed sensory activity invites children to create igloos using recycled paper plates and ice paints. The ice paints will need to be frozen ahead of time, so it’s best to begin set-up for this activity a day or two beforehand. 

For this activity, you’ll need washable popsicle sticks (preferably in light blue), water, an ice cube tray, and paper plates. The first step to prepare for the activity is to fill each section of the ice cube tray to the halfway point with paint and then to the top with water, so that each section has equal parts water and paint. Stir to combine the paint and water and leave one popsicle stick in each ice cube. Freeze them at least overnight, if not longer. Next, you will make an igloo for each child by cutting off 1/3 of each paper plate and using the larger piece for the igloo. 

When you are ready to set up the activity, begin by giving each child one igloo and one ice paint cube. Encourage the children to hold the popsicle stick and rub the ice cube on their paper plate igloo until the ice begins melting and leaving behind an icy blue paint! 

Mixed Media Winter Process Art

This simple art activity is a unique, open-ended experience that invites children to explore some of winter’s colors and textures. For set-up, you’ll need small canvases (or pieces of cardboard), washable tempera paint (in blue and purple), liquid glue, paint brushes, glitter (or Epsom salt), and snowflake confetti. 

Start by encouraging the little ones to paint blue and purple paints onto their canvases. They can use paint brushes or their fingers to spread the color around, or try using other materials, such as recycled gift cards. Next, help the children use liquid glue to add glitter/salt and snowflake confetti to their canvases. Invite them to feel, observe and describe the different textures that each material creates on the canvas. Once the canvases are dry, hang the art around your classroom for a beautiful and colorful winter display! 

Snowball Painting

This activity is simple, quick-to-set up, and uses materials that you likely already have in your classroom! All you’ll need are glitter pom-pom balls, clothes pins, paper, and paint (blue, white, and purple). To set up the painting activity, you’ll create painting “snowballs” with the pom-poms and clothespins by opening the clothespin and placing the pom-poms inside. Sinch closed to hold them in place. Then, offer the snowballs to young children with paint and paper. Encourage them to use the snowballs as stamps to stamp the paint and as brushes to spread the paint around. As the children work, talk with them about the different textures that the snowballs leave on their paper!

​​Snowy Animal Footprints 

This art project can also be a science activity as you engage the children in conversation about animals and the variety of footprints they might leave in the snow! For this activity, all you’ll need is black construction paper, white tempera paint, and small animal toys (any animals will work, but you can choose animals like penguins, foxes, and polar bears to stick with the winter theme). 

Invite children to create animal footprints by dipping the animal feet in white paint and then stamping them onto the construction paper. Compare the different shapes and sizes of the various animal footprints and notice the unique design that the different tracks leave on the paper!

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