Seasons of a Tree: A Q-Tip Painting Idea for Kids

Seasons of a Tree: A Q-Tip Painting Idea for Kids
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Here’s a great art project that not only helps kids learn about creating texture and layering colors, but also is a way to learn about the changing seasons.

We did our trees by painting with one Q-tip at a time, but I’ve also seen people doing it by bundling up 15 or so Q-tips with a rubber band. Feel free to play around with both techniques and see which you prefer.

If you’re learning about the four seasons, consider combining this art project with one or more of these books:

 

Goodbye Summer, Hello AutumnGoodbye Summer, Hello AutumnGoodbye Summer, Hello AutumnStories of the SeasonsStories of the SeasonsStories of the SeasonsThe Reasons for Seasons (New & Updated Edition)The Reasons for Seasons (New & Updated Edition)The Reasons for Seasons (New & Updated Edition)

 

 

We chose to make one art project with all four seasons of a tree, but there’s no reason why you can’t break this up into four different projects to use at different times of the year: Make fall tress in the fall, make spring trees in the spring, etc.

 

Tree Painting Materials

  • Cardboard, poster board, or
    foam board, approximately 10”x30” (we used cardboard)
  • Scissors
  • Empty toilet paper or paper towel roll
  • Paper plate
  • Cotton balls
  • Cotton swabs(aka Q-Tips)
  • Tissue paper, cut in 1 inch squares (red, orange, green and yellow)
  • Black or brown Sharpie marker
  • Clothespins
  • Glue sticks
  • Craft acrylic paint (brown, dark green, light green, pink, purple, orange, yellow, brown)

Nature Tree Supplies 2

 

Tree Painting Directions

  1. Begin by drawing the trunks of 4 trees, spaced evenly apart, on your cardboard with a Sharpie marker.

    One tree trunk dawn

     

    Four tree trunks drawn

  2.  

  3. Use scissors to cut your toilet paper roll roughly into thirds.

    Cut toilet paper roll

  4.  

  5. Press each piece of the roll flat, creating a marquise shape.

    Press tube flat

     

    Showing shape of tube

  6.  

  7. Add brown and green paint to your paper plate.

    Brown and green paint on plate

  8.  

  9. Dip one open end of the toilet paper roll into the brown paint …

    Dip TP roll in brown paint

  10.  

  11. … and dab it on the first tree trunk to create a bare winter tree.

    Dabbing brown paint on tree

  12.  

  13. You can also add some “leaves” with the brown paint and use green paint also at the bottom of the tree trunk.

    Dabbing green paint on tree

  14.  

  15. Add some pink, purple, orange, or any other colors you choose to the paper plate.

    Dip a Q-tip into the paint …

    Dipping in Qtip in paint

  16.  

  17. … and dot the second tree with multiple colors to represent the buds on a tree in spring.

    Dapping green paint on tree with Qtip

     

    Dabbing pink paint on tree with Qtip

  18.  

  19. Pick up a cotton ball with the clothespin …

    Clothespin and cotton ball

  20.  

  21. … then dip the cotton ball into paint and dab it on the third tree to represent a tree in full bloom in summer.

    Dabbing cotton ball paint on tree

  22.  

  23. Finally, use a glue stick to attach the tissue paper squares in varying colors to the fourth tree to represent the changing of colors of the leaves in fall.

    Gluing down green tissue squares

     

    Gluing down colorful tissue squares

  24. Allow the paint to dry and enjoy your artwork!

 

Four season trees

 

 

Two finished painted trees

Seasons of a Tree Painting Activity for Kids

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

Materials

  • Acrylic paints
  • Cardboard or posterboard, roughly 10" by 30"
  • Cotton Balls
  • Q-Tips
  • Toilet paper roll
  • Sharpie marker
  • Colored tissue paper squares

Tools

  • Scissors
  • Glue sticks
  • Clothespins
  • Paper plate

Instructions

  1. Begin by drawing the trunks of 4 trees, spaced evenly apart, on your cardboard with a Sharpie marker.
  2. Use scissors to cut your toilet paper roll roughly into thirds.
  3. Press each piece of the roll flat, creating a marquise shape.
  4. Add brown and green paint to your paper plate.
  5. Dip one open end of the toilet paper roll into the brown paint and dab it on the first tree trunk to create a bare winter tree.
  6. Add some “leaves” with the brown paint and use green paint also at the bottom of the tree trunk.
  7. Add some pink, purple, orange, or any other colors you choose to the paper plate.
  8. Dip a Q-tip into the paint and dot the second tree with multiple colors to represent the buds on a tree in spring.
  9. Pick up a cotton ball with the clothespin and then dip the cotton ball into paint and dab it on the third tree to represent a tree in full bloom in summer.
  10. Finally, use a glue stick to attach the tissue paper squares in varying colors to the fourth tree to represent the changing of colors of the leaves in fall.
  11. Allow the paint to dry.

Notes

You can create a painting with all 4 trees lined up, or focus on one tree at a time depending on what season it currently is.

Recommended Products

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Q tip Tree painting pin



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