Hop aboard the STEAM train with a simple to set up salt painting activity for kids! Any theme, any season, all you need is a little imagination, glue, and salt! Even if your kiddos aren’t the crafty type, every kid loves to paint with salt and watercolor or food coloring. Combine science and art with this easy absorption process. We love fun, hands-on STEAM activities!
HOW TO MAKE RAISED SALT PAINTING
PAINTING WITH SALT
Get ready to add this simple salt painting project to your art activities this season. If you want to find out how to use salt in a watercolor painting, read on! While you’re at it, make sure to check out more of our fun STEAM activities.
Our crafts and art activities are designed with you, the parent or teacher, in mind! Easy to set up, quick to do, most activities will take only 15 to 30 minutes to complete and are heaps of fun! Plus, our supplies lists usually contain only free or cheap materials you can source from home!
WHY ADD SALT TO A WATERCOLOR PAINTING?
Do you know watercolor salt painting is both science and art, but what’s the science?
Salt is a really useful product that has the ability to absorb moisture from its environment. Its ability to absorb water is what makes salt a good preservative. This property of absorption is called hygroscopic.
Hygroscopic means that salt absorbs both liquid water (the watercolor paint mixture) and water vapor in the air. Notice how the salt absorbs the watercolor mixture below with your raised salt painting.
Is sugar hygroscopic like salt? Why not try sugar for a fun science experiment and compare the results!
You could use any shapes you like for your salt and watercolor painting. We have gone with simple star shapes! Kids could also write their names with the glue and salt, or make other patterns and pictures.
CHECK OUT: Snowflake Salt Painting
Stiff paper is recommended for your raised salt painting instead of computer paper or construction paper. Look for mixed media or watercolor type paper.
You can also use watercolors instead of our simple food coloring and water mixture below!
YOU WILL NEED:
- PVA school glue or craft glue
- Food coloring (any color of choice)
- White card-stock or watercolor paper
- Template for your shapes
HOW TO MAKE SALT PAINTING
You may want to do this activity in two stages to allow the salt and glue to dry before adding watercolor.
STEP 1: Trace your template onto cardstock.
STEP 2: Add glue to outline your shapes.
STEP 3: Then add a good amount of salt onto the glue and carefully pour the excess salt off.
STEP 4: Let the glue and salt dry.
STEP 5: Mix a few tablespoons of water with your choice of food coloring to make your watercolor paint.
Salt Painting Tip: The more food coloring you use the darker your “paint” will appear.
STEP 6: Use a pipette to slowly drip the watercolor mixture onto the salt. Try not to drench the patterns but rather watch the salt soak up one droplet of color at a time.
Notice how the water is absorbed and slowly moves throughout the pattern. You can even add drops of different colors and sees what happens!
Leave your salt painting to dry overnight!
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MORE FUN ART ACTIVITIES
WATERCOLOR SALT PAINTING FOR KIDS
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