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Painting with natural materials.

Week 8 of lockdown and we’ve painted pretty much everything we can lay our hands on. From tiny keep-sake boxes covered with glitter glue, to a set of table and chairs in yellow chalk paint.

Painting has always been a hit in our house but recently my children seem less interested in creating and more interested in the screens. As much as I love educational games like Teach Your Monster to read, I don’t love the monsters they turn into when the screen gets turned off!

Luckily, our garden is getting lusher by the day and it is a constant inspiration for fun activities. One corner of the garden is covered in Clematis flowers and is an absolute beauty to behold. Of course, the wow factor is lost on small children, but their heads did turn when I presented them with these Clematis flowers to paint with.

Going back to the screen conundrum, I decided to squeeze this art session into the slot between bubble bath and bed. This time is usually reserved for supper in front of the TV, so this was a great change of routine.

Of course, there were lots of tears when they realised, after having such fun painting, they weren’t going to watch TV before bed! But it was good for us all, they were calmer, settled into their bedtime routine easier, and didn’t do the usual routine of popping down to see us every few minutes to tell, show, demand something of us. More great reasons to do art before bed, we might even add music next time - a mindfulness idea taken from this month's activity cards.

So here are some photos of painting with flowers and leaves. We watered down the paints and used regular recycled paper. As always, it quickly descended into finger painting, covering entire hands, chairs and ourselves but it was fun!

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