Paint with Cotton Swabs!

Paint with Cotton Swabs! Activity

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See more activities in: First Grade, Painting & Drawing

Use cotton swabs to create multi-sized, squishy paint brushes that are incredibly fun and easy to use! This "tip painting" project was designed especially for children with special needs, although most any child will find this activity delightful. The cotton swabs can be bunched together so that your child can grip his "brushes" more easily, while the active painting aspect of the activity will encourage his focus and fine motor development.

What You Need:

  • Cotton swabs
  • 2-3 paint colors (prefer if child selects)
  • Small paper plate for each color of paint to be poured onto by adult
  • Construction paper
  • Paper towels for cleanup

What You Do:

  1. Use a plastic table cloth or shower liner to protect the area used for this project. Use soap and water for clean-up to encourage your to use good hygiene.
  2. Present five or six colors of paint to your child, and have him choose three to use for his project.
  3. Pour his desired colors onto separate plates.
  4. Place the cotton swabs on the work surface within your child’s reach, with some of them taped together to provide an easier grip and broader strokes.
  5. If you desire, brainstorm subject ideas for your child to paint. Invite him to create his artwork of choice on a piece of construction paper!

Check out other wonderful activities from the Block Institute created especially for children with special needs.

Block Institute School provides programs and services to children with disabilities 3 to 8 years of age. For more information please visit our website at or contact us at 718-906-5400.

Debbie Scaccio recently joined the Block Institute in Brooklyn, NY, teaching art and creating original artwork with adults and children with developmental disabilities. Debbie studied art and education at Brooklyn College.

Updated on Oct 9, 2012
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See more activities in: First Grade, Painting & Drawing
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