Summertime invites all ages to experience a big dose of creativity, because you can enjoy so many artful, and sometimes messy, activities outdoors.
If you have a block party coming up in your neighborhood, a family reunion or a birthday party, here are classic ideas with clever twists to engage kids’ imaginations and show off their creative side.
The basics? A long portable table covered with newspaper and the supplies to draw everyone in.
Set out hand mirrors for “selfie” face painting using watercolor pencils dipped in water, or use this face paint recipe. Hold a mirror in one hand while drawing with the other. Kids and adults also will have fun painting one another’s faces.
Face Paint Recipe:
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon water
1/2 teaspoon cold cream
Liquid food coloring in a variety of colors
Small recycled yogurt-style container for each color
Stir together cornstarch and cold cream in a container until blended. Add water and stir. Add coloring, one drop at a time, until you get desired color.
Paint on faces with a small paintbrush or use a cotton swab.
MAKE A GOOEY GOOP CONCOCTION
Kids enjoy just about anything that’s gooey, slithery and slimy. Here’s a crowd-pleaser.
8-ounce bottle of white household glue such as Elmer’s
8 ounces water
Liquid poster paint (optional)
Small and large mixing bowls
1 cup warm water
1 1/2 teaspoons borax powder
Stir together glue, 8 ounces water and a few drops of paint (optional) in large bowl. In small bowl, mix warm water and borax. Slowly pour the borax mixture into the glue mixture. Swirl mixture with your hands, and in seconds goop will form into gooey glops as it oozes from your grasp. Pick it up, squeeze it, and play.
Note: If it gets on clothing, wash out quickly with soap and water.
SALAD SPINNER ART
Remove the lid of an old salad spinner that you use for crafts, and set a round paper plate in the middle.
Fix it to the nodule at the center of the bottom of the spinner with a piece of clay.
Pick three liquid poster paints and drop puddles near the center of the plate.
Pop the top of the spinner back on and give the crank a whirl for 5-8 seconds. Let it wind down, and remove the top. See the explosion of color spread in all directions. If you wish, add more paint and a pinch of glitter, and spin again. Remove plate, let it dry and display when you get back home.