I first saw this activity on Pinterest (a new addiction of mine) and after looking over this blog I just had to give it a try with the boys!
They used liquid watercolors, but since we didn't have those we gave food coloring a try. I figured at the very least they would have colorful ice cubes to play with even if they didn't paint very well.
All you need is an ice cube tray, something to color your water, water, a freezer and something to paint. I had a large piece of fabric that I wasn't using for anything, and I didn't have to worry about paper getting to wet and ripping.
I wasn't sure how much food coloring to put in, 4 drops is WAY more than enough. I'm sure we could have gotten pretty vibrant colors with half of that. But now we know :)
|So excited to make some paint cubes!|
I put the coloring into the ice cube tray first, so it would mix itself when I added the water. Then using a measuring cup, I poured a little water into each cube. If you are careful you could just use the sink, but I was nervous about the trays overflowing and colors mixing, so I did it this way.
Pop in the freezer and wait a few hours. We made ours in the morning with the promise that after a good nap, they would be frozen. They were too excited to nap, but by they time they *should* have gotten up from a nap they were done.
We popped them out and split them up between the boys so they wouldn't have to share cubes.. I threw a couple of old t-shirts on them so they wouldn't stain their clothes (this is a must, I just pulled the shirts out of the washer and they are definitely stained), laid out their canvas outside and let them go! (this is DEFINITELY an outdoor activity unless you want to cover everything and watch very carefully that they don't get it on your table or furniture. I just wanted them to have fun.
It took about 15 minutes for the ice to fully melt, plenty of time for the boys to really enjoy the project, and not enough that they got bored or starting doing anything crazy. Though Noah did enjoy sucking on a few of the yellow ice cubes near the end. If you have a younger child you will want to watch out for choking.
We laid it out in the sun to dry while they took a nice long bath to soak their rainbow hands, and in the 91+ temperatures yesterday it was nearly dry by the time they were out of the tub.
|Rainbow hands! 90% of it came off in the bath, they are just a tiny bit pink now.|
They love it! The next step is going to be a way to display it in their playroom so they can see it. It is not washable based on how much dye came out of the shirts they were wearing. I'm thinking of cutting it up to make some sort of garland or bunting to hang in the playroom. We'll see what they help me come up with!