Last week, Noah painted with watercolors on wet paper for the first time. We have been painting together since he was very little, but we have not used watercolors before since he was so young. I decided to do a good bit of reading about how to properly paint with watercolors with a young child in several of my Waldorf books prior to our first time painting. I am glad I did because a lot more went into the prep work and process for using watercolors properly with a young child than I would have expected (see steps below). I ordered blue Stockmar watercolors online as well as high quality watercolor paper. I would highly recommend getting good quality watercolors and paper. It made the experience that much better. I also read that it is a good idea to start with just one color at a time with a young child (blue, yellow or red) because it helps the child fully learn about each color. Then, slowly start using two and three colors together, and the child will layer the colors next to each other instead of layering the colors on top of each other. I loved watching Noah use his blue watercolors for the first time. The blue color flowed and shimmered through the wet paper. It was truly beautiful.
Now for the steps on how to paint with watercolors:
I first prepared the watercolor paper by rounding the edges.
I read that the rounded form is more suitable for the young
child than the square geometric form because it frees the child
from painting around the outline of the paper.
Then, I soaked the paper in water on a cookie sheet.
Next, I added a little bit of blue watercolor to a jar
and diluted it with water to make a light-syrup
I poured a small about of the blue watercolor into
a glass bowl for Noah to paint with.
All ready for Noah.
Before your child starts painting it is important
to wipe the wet paper off with a sponge. You don't
want the paper too wet (ours was a bit too
wet this time because the blue color puddled a bit.)
Noah enjoyed using the sponge though. ;)
Noah seemed to really enjoy using his blue watercolors and talked about it the rest of that day. I do feel that the older Noah gets the more he will get out of painting with watercolors. I would recommend it more for children probably closer to 3 or 4 years old. However, Noah did enjoy it, and said he wants to do it again. Happy painting!