Fall Hand Print Art – Exploring Negative Space with Kids

A twist on fall hand print art with preschoolers

 

Fall Hand Print Art - Exploring Negative Space with Kids

In the past, I’ve had fun making fall hand print trees with my preschool students.  This year I wanted to try something a little different.  When I came across No Time for Flashcards’ “Fall Art Project”, I had an idea about how to change it up.  I was inspired to explore negative space with the kiddos in this fall hand print art project!

Materials
Construction paper (brown and white)
Poster putty
Tempera paint in fall colors (I used yellow, red, and orange)
Sponge Paint Wands

Fall Hand Print Art - Exploring Negative Space with Kids

Directions
1. Trace child’s hand and forearm on brown construction paper, then cut it out.
2. Use poster putty to secure the “tree” to white construction paper.
3.  Once the hand print is in place, allow the child to sponge paint all around it with fall colors.  (Be sure to encourage the child to leave little or no white around the edges of the “tree”.
4. Gently remove the brown hand print, and be sure to remove any vestiges of poster putty.
5. Allow to dry, then display!

Fall Hand Print Art - Exploring Negative Space with Kids

He took his art very seriously! Look at that concentration! :)

Fun with Art
This was an incredibly simple art project for the preschool kids, but they had a blast with it!  Most of the children LOVED using the sponge paint brushes — they dabbed with them, splattered paint with them, and moved them all over the paper.  One of my students used the brushes to paint almost the entire center time!

It was fun to chat with the children during this project, too.  We talked about fall weather, the leaves changing colors, and how we all enjoy jumping in piles of leaves.  It’s nice to connect with the students one-on-one when we’re painting together!

Fall Hand Print Art - Exploring Negative Space with Kids

Learning with Art
In addition to the fun that was had painting, the children also explored some important concepts.  Many of the children noticed they didn’t need the orange paint “because you know red and yellow make orange, Ms. Mary Catherine!”  The concept of negative space in art was also discussed.  Obviously, we talked about it in an age-appropriate way, focusing on how the brown hand prints blocked the paint from the white construction paper.  It was almost like a magic trick to some of the children, based on their response — “Wow!  You can see my hand tree even though it’s not there anymore!”

Fall Hand Print Art - Exploring Negative Space with Kids

There was some bleed through when the hand prints were attached well enough to the white paper.

This little art experiment turned out really well!  The kiddos had fun, I got to spend time chatting with each students, and we explored a new art concept.  :)

Have you ever done an art project like this with your children/students?

Shared at Kids Co-Op, Pinning for PlayMom’s Library

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