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Finger Paint Fun: Easy Recipes to Make Your Own Finger Paint

written by: Melissa Elizondo • edited by: Jacqueline Chinappi • updated: 1/20/2012

Finger painting is fun for kids of all ages. These recipes are easy to make and require few materials. They will provide lots of art activities for your toddler or preschool class. You can even make these at home. These recipes would work well for a play date or a rainy day activity.

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    Use these finger paint recipes to make finger paint for your students. Finger painting is a wonderful way to enhance fine motor skills. You can also use finger painting activities to help teach concepts such as shapes, colors, or numbers. It is also a great way to reinforce concepts being taught in class.

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    Basic Finger Paint

    This finger paint recipe is great for all ages, even young toddlers who still put things in their mouths. Mix together one cup flour and one and a half teaspoons of salt. Add one cup of water and mix together. Add your choice of food coloring. It will have a gritty texture.

    Use this finger paint for just about any activity. It is great for little ones just to get the feel of the paint on their hands. Allow students to experiment with it and have them put their hand prints on the paper, or have them paint circles all over the paper.

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    Laundry Soap Finger Paint

    This recipe is a fun one to use. It is probably better suited for older toddlers and preschoolers. Make sure children keep their hands away from their eyes. Pour laundry detergent into a small amount of water. Mix using an electric mixer or egg beater. It will have a thick consistency. Add any color tempera paint and mix well.

    This finger paint recipe is great to use on finger paint paper because of its thicker consistency. Have students paint a picture of their favorite zoo animal. You could also have them practice making different shapes or letters.

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    Pudding Finger Paint

    This is a fun option for all ages, even young toddlers. It is safe to eat. Make pudding according to package directions. If you want different colors, make vanilla and mix food coloring in.

    Spoon the pudding out in bowls or pie tins and allow your students to create their pudding pictures. One fun activity to do with pudding paint is to have students paint their pictures on wax paper. While it is still wet, take a piece of Manila paper and press it on the wax paper. Students will enjoy getting to make a copy of their painting.

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    Ready to Use Finger Paint

    Shaving cream makes a wonderful finger paint for older toddlers and preschoolers. Just make sure no one ingests any. Simply squeeze out some shaving cream onto a table or desk top. Allow students to use their hands and create pictures with it. An added bonus to using shaving cream as finger paint is that it cleans the tables and desk tops.

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    Mix It Up

    These mix in ideas are an excellent opportunity to teach about textures. For a rough texture, mix uncooked rice into your finger paint. For a smooth, slippery texture, mix in dishwashing liquid soap. For a grainy texture, mix in coffee grounds. For a sticky texture, mix in corn syrup. The corn syrup will also have a super shiny finish when it dries.

    Use these ideas to let students experiment with finger paint. Allow students to choose what to mix in to the finger paint from the choices above. Have them talk about what it feels like and how it is different from regular finger paint.

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    These finger paint recipes offer fun and educational opportunities for your classroom or in your home. Find more finger painting activities right here at Bright Hub!