Pegs & Paint. 3 Easy and Fun ideas!

Aug 28, 2012

Today's Guest post comes from the effervescent, Jode, from  Mummy Musings and Mayhem Jode has a background in early childhood education and development and shares the engaging, fun and often messy play activities that she does with her twin girls. I hope you enjoy the fun activities shared here by Jode and be sure to pop by her blog to check out her other great ideas. Debs :)

What a joy it is to be guest posting on Learn with Play at Home! I always love to visit this space and be inspired by Deb and her huge variety of fun, child focused activities that anyone can try at home, so I am very excited to be able to share a post here with you!

I'm Jode from Mummy Musings and Mayhem and I am currently stay at home Mum to my twin 2 yr old toddlers and a teenager...we are indeed busy around here but I enjoy delving back into the creativity of my childcare teacher days and preparing fun yet easy toddler activities for my 'toddler twosome'.

Blogging about our family adventures (and yes sometimes stresses!) as well as the fun activities we do has become my favourite hobby and a way of holding onto those cherished early years of childhood! We are on a tight budget with me not working at the moment so i really enjoy trying to find ways of presenting creative fun using simple items from around the home or $2 shop! Fun doesn't need to be's often messy at our place though!

One of my favourite painting and creative 'tools' to use with my toddler twosome is the humble peg. It makes a fantastic little handle for those chubby , still a little uncoordinated toddler hands and grips.

 Wondering what i mean?

Here are 3 of my favourite ways to use pegs with paint.....

Peg String Painting

As easy as it sounds (I love easy with younger toddlers!)....just tie a short length of string onto will find it an easier activity for little hands if you use fairly coarse string or twine.

Fill some paint pots with your favourite water colours ( i like to use water and edicol dye for my water paints as they wash out so easily and i don't need to stress about cleaning clothes or other surfaces!) and then show the children how to dip the string into the paint using the pegs as little handles.... 

Remember to tie securely or you will have some tears when they don't come back out of the paint!

The toddler twosome loved wiping the string back and forth but older children who have more fine motor control will also enjoy making more intricate patterns .

This is a fantastic activity  for practising the pincer grip and fine motor control. It also helps to develop eye hand co-ordination as the children dip the string into the pots and then bring it to the paper! More paint results in thincker strokes...less paint thinner strokes...

Depending on what colours you use you can also talk about the colours running together and forming new ones as well as making lines or dots on the paper.

I like to tape down the paper to a table for younger toddlers as it stops the frustration of it sliding around and lets them concentrate on making their artworks instead! 

Don't you just love the concentration and experimenting here?

Tara actually figured out that the string made interesting and different patterns on the vinyl tablecloth so she went back and forth between the two .....

You could also do this activity with acrylic paint but you may want to thin it  a little with some water first. For older children you could try placing the paint in shallow containers to allow for a little more exploration and dexterity. 

Another activity we do regularly at our house with pegs is.......

Peg Painting with Sponges

So very easy! Just cut a few household sponges into thick strips, fold in half and peg!

I used a little of our homemade Cornflour Paint mixed with edicol dye the focus is on having fun with the activity rather than worrying about the mess. Cornflour paint washes out so easily and yet it is so easy and inexpensive to make! With 2 yr old toddlers who love to paint and be messy we use it a lot!

Having the handle to use gives toddlers a little more fine motor muscle control and this helps with confidence and the willingness to try new you can see we used a few different sized and shaped sponges as well as our trusty paint tray to keep it all contained! Wrapping recycled fruit netting bags around a bath sponge also makes great prints on paper!

Peg sponges are also handy as a blusher...although i don't recommend blue! 

They make fun patterns on the paper as well as being easy to clean up and reuse again for another day!

The last activity to share with you today is the easiest of all and good for a rainy day when you are lacking inspiration (and patience!)

Make-Up Sponge Peg Painting

Exactly as the name suggests! I brought a large pack of latex make up sponges at our local $2 shop...soaked them in a little water for 10 minutes and then pegged them!

Add some water paint, paper towelling and recycled meat trays and you have another toddler friendly activity for little cost! You can of course just use paper but we had trays to use and i liked the patterns the texture of the sponges made on the waxy surface of the trays.

Whenever i use water paint inside i always like to lay down a little paper towel as it soaks up the paint nicely and at the same time makes some great patterns!

Again a good activity for practising that pincer grip and fine motor control. During this activity we also talked about the colours and different textures the girls were experiencing. The paint looked different on the trays compared to the towel...why?

Tara had great fun matching the peg sponge to the right colour paint and got very upset when Ruby didn't do the same! I just love the differences between my twins...makes activities all the more interesting i think as they always approach creativity in very different ways and often i am the one to learn something new!

Ruby loves to try and figure out how to get the sponges off of the pegs....fantastic for her critical thinking and problem solving skills as well as practising her eye hand coordination!Of course then Mummy has to put them all back on or there are tears but a small price to pay for some easy fun on a budget and busy little bodies!

I hope i have inspired you to use those pegs for something other than hanging out the washing....they really are great little tools for fun and learning!

If you have enjoyed reading about the fun we had with these activities you might also find some inspiration in these posts...

Fun Ideas with Muffin Tins

Easy Ideas for Toddler Messy Play

Easy Fine Motor Fun for Younger Toddlers

We'd love to have you drop by for a visit! Thanks again to Deb for having us stop by and share some of our messy fun with you today!