I love doing messy art projects with kids. Glue, glitter, paint.. you name it! I have tons of ideas for toddlers and preschoolers… but how to get babies involved?
I was watching Baby B in his jumper one day and thought of this fun idea. While I can’t let him paint with his hands quite yet (he’d eat more than his fair share, I’m sure) why not let him paint with his feet? In the jumper, he can’t get the paint anywhere near his mouth but he can still experience the cool, slippery feeling of paint.
I decided to try the idea out in hopes of making a Father’s Day gift.
Our jumper is a Merry Muscles (affiliate link), though any baby jumper would do. For those who are unfamiliar with this particular contraption, it was designed by an occupational therapist to be a safe, ergonomic and beneficial baby exerciser. Baby B has been enjoying it more each day since we started using it at around 10 weeks.
To protect the floor, I laid an old towel down. Then, I taped a piece of paper to the lid of a large storage container.
Next, I slid the lid under Baby B’s feet and squirted some non-toxic washable paint on the paper. I showed him each color and told him what it was before hand. He was curious and watched what I was doing.
I sat back and encouraged Baby B to start bouncing. He started to bounce as usual, but noticeably felt an unexpected sensation when his feet hit the paint. I encouraged him by talking to him about the experience (“Does the paint feel slippery?”). He cooed and giggled and talked all about it as he bounced and painted.
Once the paper was mostly covered, I removed it and set it aside for Father’s Day. Baby B wasn’t quite done so I squirted some more paint on the plastic lid and let him at it. He kept on bouncing and talking and painting for a good ten minutes while I washed a sink full of dishes.
Once Baby B settled down I wiped his feet with a damp paper towel to get off the excess paint, then took him out of the jumper and washed his feet thoroughly in the sink. The lid cleaned up just fine with soap and water.
Jumper painting turned out to be a great sensory experience and DIY Father’s Day gift in one. Give it a try and let me know how it works for you.