MAMA Children’s Activity post; “I want to paint with gloopy glue, marbles and big paper!”



My son is now 3 years old and he has a great imagination and LOTS of ideas so this activity was all down to him! His brief to me was:

“I want to paint with gloopy glue, marbles and big paper!”

This was quite a specific request (as things often are with 3 year olds) so he obviously had an idea in mind! I got all the desired items (and a few more he asked for along the way) and we just followed his imagination and had a fantastically fun messy afternoon!!

– Plastic activity mat/tuff tray (for your painting area).
– “Big paper” – We used flip chart paper.
– Masking tape.
– Marbles.
– Paint pots (I use old yoghurt pots/fruit cups).
– “Mixing things” – lollypop sticks and paint brushes.
– Paints (water based, non toxic).
– Water.
– “Gloopy glue” otherwise known as PVA glue.
– Wipes.
– Card cut out butterflies (could be any thing to make prints onto).
– Old towels, Painting clothes/aprons.

We set up our painting area on our new tuff tray (which I totally love and would recommend!) Under specific instruction from my son I stuck the big paper down with masking tape.


We then started mixing up our “paint potions” – the recipe for these was;

  • A big splodge of gloopy glue.
  • Lots of paint.
  • A bit of water.

The potion was then mixed up with a lolly pop stick. Some colours were mixed a bit along the way too.

The “paint potions” were then poured onto the paper in different areas before rolling the marbles through the paint puddles to make lovely patterns across the paper. The marble rolling was really fun we tried to see who could get them from one side of the tuff tray across to the other and see if we could hit each other’s marbles.

After doing this for a bit my son wanted to start mixing the paint up with his hands (one of his favourite activities!) and pour a bit more water onto the painting to make all the colours mix in more.

We also lifted on edge of the paper so the paint fell down like rain.

At this point the temptation to get right into the painting and stomp all over it was too much so he asked to walk on the paint. By this point it was quite slippy so I had to hold him but he enjoyed “ice skating” on the paint then making footprints on a new piece of paper!

The paint was now quite marbled so we did some printing onto some butterfly cut outs which looked lovely!

As you can imagine we were VERY messy after all of this experimenting so a bath was definitely needed prior to cleaning up.

As with lots of messy art this activity was more about the process and letting my son take the lead rather than having a final product in mind. After doing everything my son wanted the large paper was too messy and wet to save but we did take lots of lovely photos of the patterns we made along the way as well as the butterfly prints. It really was fun watching my son think what he wanted to create and see where his imagination took him it made for a really special afternoon so I’d thoroughly recommend you give it a try sometime!

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Sent from my iPhone

One thought on “MAMA Children’s Activity post; “I want to paint with gloopy glue, marbles and big paper!”

  1. What a lovely idea to ‘print’ the butterflies once the painting fun was complete. A pretty record of the days activities!!


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