Recently in the litlgeek household we came across a fun craft activity that has become a favorite and something that the kids beg to do on a daily basis. The best part is that it keeps them busy, makes very little mess, and uses materials that you almost certainly already have on hand.

We call it paper towel painting, and here’s what it is:

To begin, I place one sheet of paper towel on a baking pan. (The pan will be necessary later on to collect the water in the second part of the activity.)

Next, I give the litlgeeks some washable markers. You can use any brand, as long as they are not permanent. For our activity we used Crayola markers. The boys used their markers to create pictures and designs on the paper towel. It’s a good idea to have them complete this part of the activity while working on the pan because sometimes eager little hands might accidentally tear through the paper towel. If they do, at least you have the pan there to catch any marker damage.

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Once the boys were satisfied with their art, I gave them a glass of water, a paint brush, and an eyedropper. They could use these tools to apply water to their drawing. As they drop the water onto the marker they love to watch the colors spread out across the paper. In the end, they wind up with a picture that looks very different than the one they started with. Most times, they have a really neat tie-dye effect. (As a science side-note, sometimes the colors of the marker will separate in such a way that the kids can see some of the individual pigments that were used to create the color in the first place)





Once they are done water painting, we hang up their paper towels to dry. The drying process happens pretty quickly!

At this point, you could be finished with the project, but the litlgeeks sometimes like to take their paper towel art projects and incorporate them into an even bigger craft. For example, once litlgeek though his paper towel reminded him of under the sea. With this in mind, he glued it onto a piece of blue construction paper and added some fishies in the foreground.

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This is one of the few activities that both of the litlgeeks enjoy equally, so it is a winner in my book! Plus clean-up is super easy since all of the “painting” is done with plain water.


Buy Great Paper Towel Craft Supplies!

Mr. Sketch Markers

Sparkle Paper Towels

Crayola Craft Brushes


This video and post is for entertainment purposes only. | 

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