While we were painting a few weeks ago Ayla became absorbed (no pun intended!) in watching the kitchen roll soak up the water. So we gave painting on cotton wool balls a go, it didn’t suck the paint in as well as the kitchen roll did but Ayla still enjoyed the activity and it was still really effective. If you haven’t got cotton wool you can use kitchen roll, we used that once Ayla had finished painting her flowers!

Suitable for: 1+ Years
Set up time: 10 minutes

. Cotton wool balls (or any similar such as kitchen roll)
. Card stock
. Glue
. Watered down paint
. Paint brushes

The set up;
Use the glue to stick your cotton wool balls onto the card. It is best to use card purely because paper is more likely to get soggy and rip. I glued mine into flower shapes but you can do any design! If you are using kitchen roll fold your kitchen roll in half just to make it a bit thicker. While the glue dries add water to your paint, I did this roughly at a 1:1 ratio but test out the colour on a spare piece of cotton wool. Once the glue is dry, set out the paints, paintbrushes and the picture. When your little one is ready get painting!

For older children learning letter formation you could stick the cotton wool balls into letter shapes. You can start with the letters of their own name! Or you could make up some number flash cards writing the numbers on the card and stick the corresponding amount of cotton wool balls on.

How the make the most of this activity.
I mainly let Ayla explore this one herself but when she invited me into her play by saying “mummy look!” we spoke about colours and looked at what marks were being left. We used words like “soft”, “big”, “small”, “tap tap tap” and “long line!”. Ayla will often give the marks she has had a meaning now like “mummy look cake” But explore the activity together and follow your child’s lead!

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