Our Privacy/Cookie Policy contains detailed information about the types of cookies & related technology on our site, and some ways to opt out. By using the site, you agree to the uses of cookies and other technology as outlined in our Policy, and to our Terms of Use.


Toddler Talk: Painting With Water

We’ve been doing some decorating in our home. Ramona has had plenty of opportunity to see us paint, paint, paint. (Every time I need to paint a room I swear I’m going to hire painters ... and then I talk myself into doing it myself. Never again!). Most of the time we had to keep her out of the rooms we were painting. My husband and I would take turns entertaining or watching her while the other got the dirty work done. Needless to say, our little helper was bummed. She likes to be a part of everything and have her hands in everything.

We tried distracting her with her watercolors or finger paints. Even sticker books couldn’t take her mind off the painting her mama and papa were doing. So we thought, why not give her real paint brushes? But certainly not with paint, you ask. Of course not. At least not while she’s two. Instead, we took her outside, gave her paint brushes and sponges, and a paint bucket filled with ... water! She was hesitant at first but soon she saw that by dipping the brushes into the water, she could “paint” on the concrete patio outside. (This also works on sidewalks, wood decks, patios, etc.)

The little girl had a blast. She painted circles and broad strokes, vast landscapes and polka dots. She even tried making her mark with water foot and hand prints (good thing we didn’t give her access to the paint!). Long after we thought she’d lose interest, she was still going. And since this craft/distraction is so easy to set-up and clean-up, it’ll be a weekly, if not daily, occurrence at our household. It’s especially great since the weather is turning a bit chilly and so afternoons spent in our backyard blow-up pool are becoming out of the question. This way, she still gets to splash in some water.

What you need:

bucket (bowl, tupperware, dish to hold water)

brushes (different sizes, different textures, sponges)


space that's OK to get wet (backyard spaces are the best!)

What you do:

1. Fill the bucket up

2. Give your little one the brushes

3. Let her do her thing!

More from toddler