Van Gogh’s Starry Night
An Activity for Toddlers:
This project can be used as an introduction to a classic piece of art while learning how to recreate it.

Before You Begin:
You will need shaving cream, Colorations® Liquid Watercolor, a comb for making swirls, rubber stamps (with stars and swirl shapes) and white and black paper. Also, make sure to have a copy or picture of Vincent Van Gogh's original The Starry Night to show students.

Activity Goals:
  • To experience different types of art using various tools
  • To encourage creativity in design

    Complete this activity in groups of two or three children for a fun, collaborative experience. Discuss the color combinations created from using different tissue paper colors.

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    Step 1.
    Make swirls in the “Van Gogh style” using a comb to marbleize the combination of shaving cream and Colorations® Liquid Watercolor on a piece of paper. Allow the paper to dry.
    Step 2.
    Discuss different kinds of animals. Talk about the colors of the animals’ fur or skin. Have the children point out how a cow and elephant are the same (they both have a tail, four legs, two eyes, etc.) Then, have the children point out the differences.
    Step 3.
    Paint one wheel red, another yellow, and another blue.
    Step 4.
    Cover the blue plate in blue cellophane or plastic wrap and repeat with yellow and red cellophane onto the same color plate for each wheel. Secure the plastic wrap or cellophane with glue. You can choose to either set these out on a table or attach large craft sticks to make handles for each.
    Step 5.
    Talk with your students about the different colors, defining and explaining primary and secondary colors.
    Step 6.
    Show them each primary color wheel, and stack them in different combinations. Have the young ones look through the stacked color wheels to see the secondary colors. (They can stack the blue and yellow wheels and make green, etc.)
    Step 7.
    Have the children discover new colors by allowing them free play with the color wheels.
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