Super Simple Q-tip Art

While we're stuck at home, we all feel the need to do creative art projects with our kids — but they don't need to be THAT creative to get your kids excited and involved. And they definitely don't need to be original.

Searching for ideas in the depths of the internet is more than any of us can muster right now, so allow me to hand deliver one project to you that will work for kids of any age. Let's call it "Tiny Dot Tree."

All you need are four items:

  • Paper

  • Paint (washable, duh)

  • One paint brush

  • Q-tips

Disclaimer: Babies and toddlers will turn any project that involves paint into a finger painting extravaganza where all colors mix to brown. Let it happen.

Step 1: Pick and distribute paint colors

Once you have your supplies ready, dole out the paint. I recommend three colors per kid so it doesn't become a crazy mess. This will obviously be an agonizing decision. Let them take their time — might give you time to refill your wine glass or eat some M&Ms when they're not watching.

Step 2: Paint a tree trunk

First thing's first, paint a tree trunk with the paint brush. You can just do a simple trunk, add branches, or even let your kid(s) use their (painted) hand print to make the branches.

Step 3: Use Q-tips to make the leaves

The more "leaves" the better! Tell your kid to go nuts — maybe even challenge them to do 100 or more dots. Then encourage them to add additional scenery. A bird, a butterfly, the sun...all good options.

Step 4: Marvel at your beautiful creations!

The Q-tips were really fun and accessible for both of my kids. My 3 year old's finished product was more of an abstract wonder, but she had a great time and found it easy to participate. It can be so hard to find activities that engage my kids equally so this was a huge win in my book.

Here's the finished product from my 3 year old, my 5 year old, and myself!

Still having fun? Make other scenes with the Q-tips. My 5 year old made a rainbow next — but anything is possible! Some ideas: an under the sea scene, planets and stars, shapes, or just a bunch of dots all over a page. It's pointilism at its most accessible and awesome!



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