Kids Craft :Fine Art Remake

The Great Wave Off Kanagawa
Teaching children art appreciation doesn’t take a magical formula, it takes exposure. My son loves paintings and part of it comes from looking at my big coffee table books,part children’s books, part Little Einsteins ( yes I do allow some tv and we love that show!) and part is understanding that he can make art as well. When ever he sees a wave he announces it’s Kanagawa! I wanted to do a project with chalk and this seems like a great fit. Also there is no reason this can’t simply be a fun project for an ocean or water theme.

  1. Before starting show your child the painting if they haven’t seen it, or as a reminder if they have. I find image searches on Google to be the easiest.
  2. Gather your materials. You will need 2 pieces of construction paper, one black or dark blue and one light brown. Some chalk , glue and scissors.
  3. Start by drawing a wave on your black paper. If your child can do this they should!
  4. Fill your wave in with white chalk. This makes the wave look foamy and like it’s crashing.
  5. Have your child rub the chalk with their hands to smudge it. This lasted a long time, he loved exploring how he could “fuzzy” the lines of chalk.
  6. Cut out.
  7. Add glue to the brown paper. To minimize glue all over the place and at least at our house lately a major meltdown, I put small a few small marks to guide my son’s gluing. This is just a trick to keep him happy- but thought I’d share it , in case your independent minded gluer needs a hand as well.
  8. Glue the wave on and you are done! I tried to get him to do some drawing on the brown paper but he wanted nothing to do with it. I think what he made was perfect for him and showed it off with much pride. Don’t hesitate to add more detail though.


” Action Jackson” by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan is a great book not only about Jackson Pollock but also about how an artist goes through the artistic process, their influences and what their life is like. This book is perfect for older children but my son loved looking at pictures and Jackson Pollock’s dog! I would suggested this for anyone with budding artists!

“Museum ABC” by the Metropolitan Museum Of Art is a book that was first loved at our house because of the “C is for Cat” page , an early interest of my sons. I loved it because for each letter there are 4 usually very cropped pieces of paintings, showing only that part that fits the subject of each letter. In my nerdy love of identifying paintings I play a game with myself trying to figure out which are which as my son is identifying the letter, and finding the subject matter in each. The book is so beautiful, it’s hard to do it justice in a simple review. A wonderful concept and a great intro to art books for even the tiniest patrons.

“Seen Art?” by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith is one of those books that makes me squeal with delight. The story is funny, and clever and the art included is diverse and some is probably new to most readers. The story is about a little guy who is looking for his friend Art and people keep misunderstanding him and directing him to the MOMA where he is shown art as well as the debate of “But is it art?” plays on as he passes well recognized masterpieces and provocative modern art alike . I was turning the pages too fast for my son I was so excited to see what was next while he wanted to look at the art. I loved the page where he comes to a Monet , you see the little guy from behind and he is very small and despite not seeing his face you can imagine his face frozen with wonder. the book is fantastic and I love the levels of meaning and the sheer amount of art packed into this book. Well Done!

Like this post? Share it with a friend!

Become an Email Subscriber

Sign up above and receive all new No Time for Flashcards posts directly in your email inbox.

You may also like these posts

suppliesOlympic Braceletsmess free color mixing with shaving cream


  1. Karen says

    Wondering if you have some tips for me. My son doesn't seem interested in drawing and painting at all, except for the paint or materials themselves. He will draw one, small mark with each colour, just to see the colour, but won't be encouraged to go any further. He loves it if I do the drawing, and will happily issue requests for various shapes and animals, but doesn't seem to want to create them himself. Painting is pretty tedious. I pour out the paints, he'll grudgingly make a mark with each, then demand more paints to be poured (which he then won't do anything much at all with). He's only two, so there's no pressure of course, but I think he'd really enjoy painting once he got going!

  2. EntertainingMom says


    It might take a little while. Or it might not happen. My daughter was immediately drawn to anything art-related and my boys not so much. My oldest was 4 when he would paint with pleasure, and still there were other things he prefered to do. It's not that he was not creative, but his creativity manifested itself differently. My oldest still won't (often) pick up markers or crayons, but he loves to build with blocks, legos, etc… and the things he builds are tremendous! He has also discovered the art of cooking and is showing signs of being a fabulous chef!

    Does he have blocks? Bring him in to the kitchen with you… perhaps have him help you follow the directions on the back of the brownie package. He can "read" the ingredients with you by looking at the pictures. Cooking with children is another fun way to be creative and the end result is always a good one šŸ˜‰

    (Sorry for butting in… I'm not Allie!)

  3. Karen says

    Not butting in at all! Thanks very much for your comment. It's a good reminder that there are plenty of other ways to enjoy being creative. And indeed, he does love building towers with blocks, cooking, and some other imaginative play.

  4. Carla says

    Just wanted to thank you SO much for your blog! I've been struggling with how to get my son interested in art and your blog is perfect. It's so understandable and specific. I love, love, love that you recommend books with your projects as we are book lovers around here. I can't wait to start our daily art projects. This is just what I've been looking for.

    Thanks again!

  5. Infant Bibliophile says

    That MOMA book looks great! I'm sure you've heard of this site, but in case others haven't, is a fun site for kids to paint like Jackson Pollock with their mousepad/touchpad.

  6. Allie says

    Karen and Jessica – I love that you two are discussing this and I hope no reader ever feels they can't comment on a comment and help, please always feel free!

    Jessica is right it may take time or it may not happen. One key is to find something he's really into , so my son loves garbage trucks so sometimes we simply use his garbage truck toys as a paint tool and roll them through and print it on the paper. The inclusion of his favorite thing is the boost he needs sometimes.

    If he likes testing out colors , what if you get a giant stamp pad ( they have multi-colored ones) and a fun set of stamps, there will be variety and every time he uses a new one it will be different and may trigger that desire for discovery in him.Oh I just through of another idea, have you done any collages with him? You can do nature ones,cut paper, sequins… the sky is the limit. There are many kids who are not cool with paints and crayons but will glue things until they run out of glue.

    My other suggestion is simply do a project every now and then by yourself where he can see you like it and you are modeling it for him, without any pressure this will sometimes make a 2 year old think joining in was their idea and be the trick to getting them involved.

    It sounds like you are already avoiding pressure and bribery which is so important not to do. At 2 they are more stubborn and their memories are much deeper than we can imagine and a bad experience can really through them off. I am often asked if i do crafts daily and no we don't. At their age ( my son is 2 as well) we should be suggesting and supporting and it's hard to do when we think something will be so fun and they will like it but we just can't convince them! Hang in there try some of these suggestions over the next few weeks and please let me know how it goes.

    Carla – thank you! I am so happy you found us!

    Lynn- never seen that site! I have a feeling we are going to be spending some extra computer time on it today. Thanks!

  7. Monica Crumley says

    Great ideas. Thanks for the book recommendations as well. Have you seen Dan's Angel? It's a great art book about a boy who is shown around a museum by an angel and it explains the meaning behind some of the classic art.

  8. Jen says

    I LOVE your site!

    I wasn't big into art as a kid — I liked to see the various colors but I felt stuck as to what to do with them. I was a little older than 2, but my mom would draw for me/tell me to draw a "crazy design" — great looping scribbles all over the page, which I'd then color in, making each small section a different color.

    I love the idea of rolling trucks through the paint, and was thinking about this as a larger-scale outdoor activity with tempura paints on the driveway — one could paint with footprints, bike tires ride-on toys, pull toys, push toys like a play lawnmower, etc. I bet my kids would get way into this, as they love making footprints when there is a puddle on the sidewalk.

    Also, Karen (sorry to go on and on) — I had/have some texture issues. I hated the way crayons felt when used on a coloring book page, but enjoyed the way markers felt on smooth paper. I am picky about paint brushes, too, based on the way they feel when they go across the paper. If you think your son might be that way a little, maybe a selection of different types of brushes would help him get more into painting.

  9. [email protected] says

    We have the glue meltdowns, too!! How funny. I will try your suggestion. Thanks.

  10. The Murray Crew says

    I am sooooo glad I got to meet the REAL PERSON behind "No Time For Flash Cards!" You are doing AWESOME work here! Looking forward to using it as a resource in the near future!

    Big Hugs!
    Quad Mama

  11. Karen says

    ah, those are such wonderful suggestions, thanks Allie. He loves trucks and vehicles of all kinds, so a vehicle painting could be a winner.

    Stamping is a brilliant idea!

    Collages we have had mixed success with – he likes it when I cut out pics from a magazine and he sticks them. A nature collage was fun in the collecting stages but he didn't actually want to stick the pieces on the page šŸ™‚ – after the first one it seemed he'd got the idea and enough was enough, hehe.

    Jen: I will bear in mind the texture aspect. He does get a bit finicky about paint on his hands (which puts an end to finger painting crafts pretty quickly ;-).

  12. Jacqui says

    We just borrowed a book from the library called “the great wave” it’s based on that painting,the story is a little flimsy but the artwork is great, my 3 yo is seeing images of rthe great wave everywhere including in the background of fruit ninja in the iPhone !


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *