Have you tried spin art? I don’t know who came up with this idea, but man, they were onto something. We’ve tried spin art with all kinds of unusual objects and it’s always been a big hit with the kids. I’ve been really into autonomy lately when it comes to art. Providing rich materials and the freedom to be creative has been my main objective with my art students. So this time, I created a spin art buffet bar for art class and the kids loved it. If you’re not familiar with spin art, it’s the art of spinning objects in a salad spinner with paint. The results, as you can see below, are pretty gorgeous, and it’s something all kids can be successful at.
You’ll need a few things for a spin art buffet bar. 1. a salad spinner – I like this one from ikea and it’s now available on amazon, which is totally amazing because going to ikea as we all know, is slightly/majorly anxiety provoking if you have children. 2. paint you can easily squeeze from a bottle. I LOVE the mala paints from ikea. The bottle is the best for squeezing and the paint comes out slowly in a thin line so the kids don’t go through it too fast. You can also put tempera paint in a squeeze bottle like this and it will work great. 3. different objects for spinning – this part is really open to what you find interesting and what you have around the house and what you’re willing to buy. We used pre cut round white paper, wood stars, peace signs and wood hearts, smooth small stones, and random tiles I got from my favorite place Trash for Teaching. I’m sure there are lots of other things that would be great for spinning. Leaves, pinecones and flowers are next on our list.
I have a few salad spinners since I teach a lot of art classes, so it was great to give each child their own spinner. Of course they can take turns as well, but if you can have two kids to a spinner, that’s probably ideal. I talked a little bit about the different things at the buffet bar and demonstrated how to use the paint. I sang my little ditty “A little dab’ll do ya,” to remind the kids that they don’t need a lot of paint! This is important otherwise they will likely squeeze half the bottle out and create spin art soup rather than spin art. Then we got started. Kids chose whatever object that interested them, placed it in the salad spinner, and squeezed paint on top to their liking. Then they placed the cover on and gave it a good spin.
Each piece came out totally unique an beautiful. Every time the kids opened the spinner we heard a resounding ooooh and ahhhhh. Those sounds never get old. I had set up a large piece of craft paper so everyone could place their pieces to dry while they worked. Kids love having their own designated area with a piece of tape and their name on it. They kept going back and forth to admire their work and place the next object.