How do you allow your child to learn about messy things without making huge messes that are hard to clean up?
You teach messy lessons in the tub of course!
Today we had one of those lessons. It's one we've actually had before. I found a recipe for bath paint on Pinterest sometime last year and I've been letting Bailey paint the bath tub ever since.
It's a super simple recipe. Like, unbelievably easy. You'd have to be half asleep to really screw this up. It's only 3 ingredients. The base is cornstarch and baby wash or baby shampoo. The color is just normal food coloring. It doesn't take much, just a few drops per color.
You could probably let the kid use sponges or brushes, but Bailey loves using her fingers. I put her in a dry tub with a muffin pan full of bath paint and let her go to it. When the paint is gone or the tub and kid are covered just hose everything down and you have a clean tub and a clean child.
I like to give Bailey 6 colors.
She gets the primary colors:
And she gets the secondary colors:
The purple turned out more like maroon this time because I was out of my normal red food coloring and had to improvise with a red that was almost orange, but Bailey doesn't really care either way. She likes to cover her feet and make footprints on the tub and she even enjoys using the washcloth to wipe the paint off when it's time to clean up.
I like to use the muffin tin because it's a great way to separate the colors and keep them from running together. Of course Bailey couldn't care less if the colors mix. She frequently dips her finger in every color before smearing it everywhere.
This is how you make it.
Combine 1 Tbsp cornstarch and 2 pumps or squirts of baby wash or baby shampoo. I like to mix it with a toothpick. If the mixture looks a little thick you can either add a little more baby wash or a few drops of water to thin it.
To color it add 4-6 drops of food coloring.
Red- 4-6 drops red
Orange- 2-3 drops red, 2-3 drops yellow
Yellow- 4-6 drops yellow
Green- 2-3 drops yellow, 2-3 drops blue (or 4-6 drops green)
Blue- 4-6 drops blue
Purple- 2-3 drops blue, 2-3 drops red
If you use 6 colors in a regular size muffin tin you will have 6 empty spots that older children can use to mix colors. There are also neon food color drops available that have purple and orange in them so you wouldn't have to mix colors yourself, and the neon food colors also have pink.
So let your kids have some messy fun without stressing about the clean up. Trust me they will enjoy it. The only problem you'll have is they will be begging to paint every time they have a bath.
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