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Painting Games to Keep Kids Busy

Kids and crafts go together like peanut butter and jelly. Our house is always well stocked with jars of paint, assorted brushes, and a variety of surfaces to paint. We have wooden boxes and birdhouses, canvases and paper, tee shirts and tote bags.

Everything from bedroom furniture to pumpkins is fair game for a project, and you can usually find at least a couple of us in the backyard getting messy with paint on a Saturday afternoon. The following are some fun and easy ideas for a crafty good time with your kids!

Sponge Painting (all ages) >

A favorite of young and old, sponge painting with water-based paints is a fun way to make paper art and to decorate boxes, picture frames and even the walls in your home.

Experiment with a variety of household sponges of various textures and shapes to bring out the creativity in your gang!

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Paint–A–Long Online Game (3 to 5) >

Available online and on mobile platforms, this PBS Peg + Cat interactive game lets kids use paintbrushes and colors to create shapes, characters and original works of art for hours of fun.

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Splatter Box Painting Game (3 to 5) >

Where I live, early autumn days can still hit 85 degrees. This splatter box activity from Sujatha Balaji of BlogMeMom and featured on Kidspot is a perfect way to say goodbye to summer. Put on shorts one more time and get ready for some silly outdoor fun before the snow flies.

When you line an old box with paper, you create the perfect canvas for an energetic game of throw the painted balls into the box. Take the sensory experience up a notch and let kids press squishy creatures into paint and onto the paper to create imaginative designs.

What You'll Need

  • large box
  • butcher paper (or any other light-colored roll of paper)
  • tape
  • paint and water (make sure paint is water based, child-safe and non-staining)
  • tennis balls
  • sensory squishy creatures
  • paint trays

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Online Coloring Games

There are loads of online options out there for times when you need a creative activity that travels well and doesn’t make a mess. I was skeptical at first, but these games involve color selection and hand eye coordination.

Background music is catchy and entertains kids as they work to complete projects. Two that caught me eye recently are:

Kids Finger Painting Art Game (1+) >

From, this fun app for Android lets your kids practice color recognition and develop fine motor skills.

With over 240 coloring pages to choose from, kids will enjoy selecting colors to fill their paint buckets and using pencil and paintbrush tools to complete pictures.

Buy it on Google Play Kids Finger Painting Art Game on Google Apps

Minion Games >

For this online game from Agnes Games, players use their mouse or track pad to dip a paintbrush into colors to complete pictures of the Minions.

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Nancy SchillerNancy Schiller

Nancy Schiller writes helpful, humorous articles on parenting, gardening and business- related topics.

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