What better art activity to go with Winslow Homer’s painting, The Country School, than APPLES? Here’s a fun print project that can be made into a cute card to thank a special teacher or a poster for the fridge!
In this post you’ll find:
- Supply list
- Step-by-step directions
- Helpful hints
- Clean-up tips
- Variations and/or adaptations for different ages
- Ways this activity aids children’s mental, physical, and social development
Let’s get started!
- Apples, 3 or 4 should be enough (no need to buy expensive ones; they won’t be edible afterwards)
- Red, yellow, and green tempera paint
- Wide, flat paint brushes and a few round ones, if you wish to fill in spaces (the toothbrush is in the photo in case I decided to spatter paint)
- Paper plate or plastic container for paint puddles
- Scrap paper to practice on
- Sturdy paper to print on
- Card stock in various colors for card or poster backing
- Have an adult cut the apples in half
- Cut the paper for printing into various sizes, such as for a card (smaller sizes are easier to work with)
- Choose a color and paint it on an apple half with a flat brush
- Practice making prints on the scrap paper
- Don’t be afraid to experiment with different papers and techniques
- When apple prints are dry, add leaves and stems with crayon or marker
- Cut apart to make posters and cards
- you’ll get more complete prints if you place the apple half on the paper, then carefully pick up the apple with the paper stuck to it. Turn it over so you can first pat to be sure the paper is stuck, then smooth the paper against the apple. (Be prepared for smears as the paper may slip)
- It often works best to have an apple half and a brush for each color
- But you can wipe the paint off a used apple and change colors that way
- If you want more complete prints, use a round brush dipped in the same color and pounce up and down in the places you want filled in. You want it to still look like a print.
- If you plan to cut the prints apart for cards, etc, leave plenty of space between the prints
Clean up Hints:
- Acrylic paints will work fine, but take more cleanup and don’t come off clothes as well)
- Be sure to put a plastic table cloth or large paper under your work
- Have lots of paper towels handy
- Have a wastebasket close for paper plates, apples, and paper towels
- A dish washing tub is great for washing brushes
- Lay brushes flat on paper towels to dry so they keep their shape
Variations and/or adaptations for different ages:
- Younger children will enjoy choosing and painting the apples, but may need help turning the apple and paper over and learning to pat the paper against the apple
- Try painting red and green or red and yellow on the same apple half and see if you like the combinations
- Try printing apples of various colors all over a larger paper
- Cut leaf shapes from sponge or bring in some real leaves and print these with the apples (look up what shape leaves apple trees have and find or make an appropriate shape)
- Add wiggly eyes to your printed apples
5 Ways this activity aids children’s mental, physical, and social development
- Using paint brushes and other art tools helps children develop fine motor skills.
- This art activity helps develop visual/spatial skills as children decide where to place their prints
- When children make choices with colors and the ways they want to finish and display their prints, it enhances problem-solving skills.
- Art gives children opportunities to explore their interests and talents.
- Making art enhances creativity and refreshes minds and eyes tired from screens.
Molly prefers to eat apples, but she hopes you enjoy printing apples for cards and posters! And we hope to see you back next week for another Kathy the Picture Lady post.
I’m trying to be good
Maybe I’ll just try a lick
Oh, okay, I’ll wait!
But Don’t You Wait!
- If you’d like more activity ideas for art, history, and nature, curriculum connections, and links to more resources, be sure to sign up for my newsletter and receive a free guide to making art museum visits a fun masterpiece for your whole family!
- Visit my website where you’ll find free downloadable puzzles, how-to-draw pages and coloring pages for kids and an updated list of my hands-on workshops, chapels, and presentations for all ages. http://www.kathy-oneill.com/