Process art is a truly unique way to make something special. We think this lovely Valentine’s oil pastel and watercolor process art project is the perfect gift to share this Valentine’s Day. We love a good Valentine’s Day art project for toddlers and think they are an essential part of your Valentine’s Day activities!
Valentine’s Day Art Projects for Toddlers
Valentine’s Day is such a wonderful holiday to celebrate in preschool. It is full of pinks, conversation hearts, love bugs, and paper hearts.
But of course, the fun of this holiday is not due to the candy or flowers but because it’s such a relatable and important theme for preschoolers to learn. Our Valentine’s Day lesson plans are full of learning about friendship and kindness.
At story time, we focus on reading stories about friendship, celebrating and practicing kindness, and sharing with each other.
Plus kids absolutely adore getting Valentine cards! It’s a sweet little tradition that toddlers and preschoolers value, even if it’s a small note or card. It’s really the sweetest thing to watch their excitement as they celebrate being friends with all their peers!
Frequently Asked Questions About Teaching Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity to celebrate friendship and kindness with preschoolers. Invite children to show appreciation for their friends and family by making easy diy Valentine cards and sweet crafts to show love and care. Encourage random acts of kindness and read high-quality picture books about friendship, managing emotions, and kindness.
Process art ideas for Valentines day are a great way to develop fine motor skills, play with new mediums, and surprise a special someone with a lovely piece of unique and handmade art. Art activities for toddlers can include this layered heart craft or this simple fingerprint heart Valentine. This easy collage is another Valentines process art idea that is simply stunning!
Valentine’s day and friendship definitely top the list of great February themes. Consider including Groundhog Day and learning more about what happens if the groundhog sees his shadow. February is also Dental Health month so it’s a great time to incorporate teeth and dental activities with your preschoolers.
Valentine’s Arts and Crafts Ideas for Toddlers
With just four supplies, this Valentine’s Day process art project turns out simply stunning!
- watercolor paper
- oil pastels (we used pink, purple, orange, and white)
- water pipettes (droppers)
- liquid watercolors (we used red and purple)
The Set Up
One of the best parts about this kids art project is that there is very minimal prep work involved. Just prepare the liquid watercolors and lay out the oil pastels, droppers, and watercolor paper.
While you could use regular cardstock or even construction paper for this project, watercolor paper takes it to a whole new level! I highly recommend taping down the edges of the paper before you start, or the addition of the liquid watercolors may cause it to warp.
We used these art smocks to keep the mess to a minimum, and as long as you don’t wash them too frequently, they hold up really well. (They are art smocks, so it really is ok for them to be covered in paint!)
Making the Valentine’s Day Art Project for Toddlers
Invite your preschoolers to choose a few oil pastels and draw shapes, lines, and squiggles onto their paper. There isn’t a whole lot of instruction needed – they can draw anything that appeals to them. One older child drew hearts, but most made different lines and shapes.
Oil pastels are fascinating to preschoolers as they are so different from crayons and offer so many cool features and can really make the artwork pop. Encourage them to experiment by smudging the art with their fingers, smearing more than one color together, and layering colors to see what happens.
Invite children to apply different types of pressure with their fingers as they smudge and smear. What happens when you pull hard along the paper? How about when you lightly mix the two colors?
This is all fine motor work at its best! Those little fingers are holding oil pastels, smearing and smudging, and in the next step, squeezing droppers, which are all perfect for developing fine motor skills.
After your preschooler is satisfied with their oil pastel art, it’s time to move on to the watercolor component of the art project. Using pipettes (droppers) and liquid watercolors, model how to squeeze the bulb on the pipette while in the jar and then release it to suck up some of the paint.
Once getting the paint into the dropper is mastered, encourage the children to be creative as they drop the watercolor paint onto their artwork. What happens when they squeeze gently? What happens when they squeeze with lots of pressure? Encourage them to share what happens to their artwork as they add the liquid watercolors.
Once again, there isn’t a lot of instruction or desired end result here. There is so much learning happening as the kids experiment and create, and each final product is beautiful!
Didn’t this gorgeous Valentine’s Day art project for toddlers turn out so unique and special? I love that each child made their own decisions when creating this seasonal process art and in turn, they have something to be proud of. Plus, they got to work creatively with new mediums – oil pastels and liquid watercolors!
Valentine’s Day Books for Preschool
You can never read too many books to kids! Here are some of our Valentine’s Day favorites. There are those that include hearts and roses, but also some that talk about wonderful themes like friendship and kindness.
More Related Preschool Activities
- watercolor paper
- oil pastels
- water pipettes (droppers)
- liquid watercolors
1. Set out the oil pastels, watercolors, and droppers. Tape down a piece of watercolor paper for each child.
2. Invite your preschoolers to choose a few oil pastels and draw shapes, lines, squiggles, and anything else that appeals to them.
3. After your preschooler is satisfied with their oil pastel art, it's time to move on to the liquid watercolors component of the art project. Model how to squeeze the bulb of the pipette while in the jar of watercolor and then release it to suck up some of the paint.
4. Invite your preschoolers to drop the paint onto the paper in different ways.
5. Let the art projects dry and enjoy the unique creations!
I am an educator, book enthusiast, and a stay at home momma to two precious and long-awaited littles. My degree is in Early Childhood Education and Curriculum and Instruction and I have spent the last 15 years working with young children. I feel very fortunate to have this time to watch my babies grow and I can’t wait to share my passion for learning and reading with you!