Fun and games: Michelangelo

Sure, plenty of toddlers and young children go through a mural phase when any wall in the house is fair game for their art making, but how much of that is the call of the forbidden, and how much is just because drawing on a space as big as a wall is fun? There’s probably a bit of both going on.

Lucky for your little artist-in-waiting, there are plenty of destruction-free ways for him to let some of those artistic impulses out into the world – without taking it out on your living room.

  • Window art: If tempera paint is part of your little one’s artistic routine, mixing in some dish soap will make that paint just washable enough that Baby can now use the windows in your home as his own personal canvas. The windows can act as his very own gallery too, showing off his creations to the outside world for as long as you leave them up – so don’t forget to proudly point out his creations to him next time you leave the house!
  • Just like wallpaper: If Baby has a passion for interior decorating, why not let him experiment? With a large roll of butcher paper and Baby’s favorite kind of art supplies, you can give him the chance to design his very own style of wallpaper! And then, if you’re daring, you can attach it to his bedroom wall for him to enjoy. And when inspiration strikes again, you can dig out the roll of paper and get him going on round two.
  • Splish splash, paint in the bath: Bathing is all about getting clean, but if you’re up for letting Baby leave your bathroom more colorful than he found it, bath painting is a great way to make bathtime fun and let Baby create a mural that will clean off easily. Sure, you could buy bath paints, but figuring out the best way to make your own – like mixing whatever spare soap substance you have lying around (liquid hand soap, the end of a bottle of shampoo, a body wash you got in a gift bag and don’t like to use) with corn starch and food coloring – is part of the fun. And in the process, you’ll introduce Baby to how to conduct an experiment, because da Vinci had the right idea – science and art go hand in hand!

If you’re worried that these fun wall-painting strategies will teach Baby that wall art is always an option, it’s a great time to talk to him about boundaries. He’s getting big enough now that he should be able to understand just when drawing on the walls is allowed and when it’s off limits.

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