Painting is such a wonderful medium for the kids to work with. It can be done with fine motor skills in mind or with gross motor skills in mind. Below the kids are using small brushes to create on small paper that I cut. They really explored the paint with the little brush, actually discussing how "tiny" the bristles (they used the word "top" for the bristles) were. They noticed that L's brush top was a little fatter than Roo's and that his marks came out bigger than hers. Little Miss M noticed that her brush was more like L's than Roo's. It was an interesting conversation for two early 3 yr olds to have, but one they were very comfortable having.
In the next photo you'll see Roo using her whole body to paint on the plexi glass easel. She was huffing and puffing as she reached for the top most corner of the easel. When she decided it was time to clean the paint off, she was very happy that the spray bottle's spray reached those corners, but she still had to reach with the squeegee to remove some of the paint. The amount of energy exerted was amazing... she needed a rest (in the reading tent) and a glass of water when she was finished. She felt very proud of herself, she accomplished what she set out to do, paint and clean the ENTIRE easel :)
Then we have Little Man here experiencing the paint with both his fine motor skills and gross motor skills. He starts out tentative and moves onto to a more robust way of manipulating the paint. He thoroughly enjoyed himself on that day, working with the paint for almost 20 minutes (which I deem almost a life time for a 1 yr old :)). I think the only thing better than the paint, was the cleaning up in the sink when he was finished.
Paint is a gift to any Child Care Provider/Early Child Teacher. It provides the children with rich experiences, that can be explored through utensils, brushes, hands, feet, elbows and spray bottles. You can paint on something smooth, rough, multi-dimensional, or yourself. We can paint above our heads, on the floor, or right at eye level. You see, there is no wrong way to use paint. Paint proves to be one of those early childhood tools that is never ending and multi- faceted, something that all children from infant to preschool and older (I love paint days!!) should have access to. Look around your providers home, or your child's preschool classroom... are there paints out, splatters on the floor or wall, creations on the wall?? I hope so.