Incorporating art learning into your day for your little ones doesn’t have to be all mess and cleanup for you.

Art instructor Lauren Runion of YellowBobbyPins Art Camp suggests taking your children to the Greenville County Museum of Art, taking advantage of First Fridays at the Greenville Center for Creative Arts, and visiting Artisphere and Art in the Park.

“These are free so you never have to feel guilty about only staying a few minutes,” she said.

She suggests cutting up old magazines and then using glue sticks to make fun sculptures. Recycle of newspapers by taping them to the table and allowing a special marker day. She shares her outdoor bubble tempera recipe.

Outdoor bubble tempera

  • 2 squirts of dish soap
  • ¾ cup of water
  • 2 tablespoons of tempera paint

Mix and enjoy blowing bubbles into the cup and placing the paper over them or blow using a bubble wand onto the paper.

Art instructor Kelly McSharry of Creating Artists for Tomorrow said a few cheap and easy homemade suggestions include using food coloring to make water paints, painting with leftover coffee (while you drink a fresh batch) and painting in the bathtub with jello. She also shares her easy to make play-dough recipe:

Homemade play-dough

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 cup salt
  • 4 teaspoons cream of tartar (McSharry says this “is the key ingredient”)

Mix all together while heating over low, continuially stirring until the mixture forms into a ball. After it cools you can add food coloring drops and have your child knead them in or add them prior to cooking.

Outside is the place to get messy and not bring it in the house. Littles can use sidewalk chalk, shaving cream or whipped cream and baking soda with vinegar and food coloring all without making a mess inside. Hose them off or have them play in the kiddie pool and you have a clean and happy kid.

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