Printing is a great technique to explore with young children. There are so many different ways to create prints and the opportunity for many “happy accidents”. We started our printing unit with a simple monoprint. A monoprint is a print that can only be made once, as opposed to most other printing techniques which allow for multiples.little ones.
As always, we chose re purposed materials in the form of a plastic serving tray and white scrap paper. Using tempera paint, we spread a thin application of blue paint directly on the serving tray. This can be done with a brush or a brayer, we used a 2″ foam brush. make sure there is enough paint to cover the size paper you are using and the application is thick enough to make marks in, but not too thick that you will lose the image. You may want to practice this before you start the project with your little ones.
To make their design, I supplied the kiddos with Q-tips, which they used to “draw” their image in the paint. It’s interesting when they realize they are “drawing” by removing paint instead of adding it. Once their image is created, we place the paper on top of the image and very gently, this was the hardest part, burnish or smooth down the paper to lift the image onto the paper. We just used our hands instead of a brayer or other tool because I wanted to make sure the entire image was transferred and make it more of a tactile experience as well. Don’t press too hard and don’t move the paper. You can see the image faintly once there is enough paint transferred onto the paper. At this point, life the paper gently and slowly from one end and voila! A lovely print of their original drawing.
One thing to keep in mind, it will be a reverse image so keep it simple and stay away from words or letters. The lovely examples below are all from my Kindergarten class.
The look of wonder on their faces when they see their print is priceless 🙂