Top 6 Montessori Art Supplies to Inspire Your Child

Learning by doing is an essential principle in Montessori learning. Children learn best when they’re able to make self-directed choices, use high-quality materials, and fully participate in a hands-on way.

When it comes to arts and crafts, families find that stocking their shelves with Montessori art supplies makes it easy to invite young children to explore and create freely. When art supplies are readily available, children can take the lead in their own learning. The colors, textures, smells, and shapes can hold their attention like nothing else will!

In this blog, we’re going to share our top five list of Montessori art supplies with you. Don’t be intimidated by this list. If you don’t have some of the items we mention, don’t feel pressure to go out and buy them right away. Let your child explore with the supplies you have on hand, rotate the materials every week or so, and purchase new supplies when your little one is ready for something different. Note: Be sure to purchase non-toxic, kid-safe materials. As you know, nearly everything you give small children will eventually wind up in their mouth at some point!

Read below for our favorite Montessori Art Supplies!

1. Watercolor paper

Although you may have printer paper or notebook paper lying around, a thicker paper provides a better base for Montessori art projects. By using watercolor paper, you’ll have less frustration with paint or markers soaking through or ripping the paper. Your kids will also appreciate the thicker, more substantial feel of the watercolor paper. Look for paper that’s 140 pounds. If you’d like, you can cut the paper in half to make the pack last longer.

2. Crayons or oil pastels

Using crayons gives children the opportunity to practice the pressure and grip that’s required for writing. Just by coloring, they’re developing the hand muscles they’ll need to write essays when they grow up! When it comes to Montessori art supplies, you want to pay attention to a few specific qualities in crayons.

  • - Thick crayons or colored pencils are easiest for young children to grasp. And, they’re harder to break!
  • - As toddlers refine their grip, resist the urge to move directly up to adult-sized writing utensils. Instead, look for crayons and pencils that are short. Broken crayons are perfect for this!
  • - Crayon “rocks” can help children develop a tripod grip. They’re also a fun shape to incorporate into your art materials.
  • - Beeswax crayons enable children to layer colors on top of each other.

3. Paint and brushes

Yes, it can get very messy, but painting is one of the best Montessori art activities you can do with your children. Seeing the texture of the paint, watching it change on the paper, mixing the colors—it’s a great learning experience!

You can pick an assortment of paints such as a watercolor palette, tempera paint, and liquid watercolor. Then add a variety of paintbrushes of different sizes, materials, and shapes.

We have a few easy ways to make sure painting is fun, not frustrating, for your family.

  • - Have your child wear an apron or a bib with sleeves.
  • - Encourage your child to place the paper on an art tray or old baking sheet before they begin painting.
  • - Use spill-proof paint pots. Of course, these are not 100% spill-proof, but they do offer a partial lid on top to control the spill when they tip.
  • - Tempora paint cakes come in a dry paint palette much like watercolors. They don’t spill, but they still offer a thick consistency when mixed with water.

And remember, cleaning up is a Montessori learning experience too!

4. Clay

Clay is one of the best Montessori art supplies to keep around for little hands! It’s an incredibly open-ended medium and gives kids the chance to improve coordination, fine-motor skills, and decision-making skills.

We recommend using non-hardening clay (often called plastilina clay) and keeping it in an air-tight container on your art shelf. For a unique texture and smell, you can also use modeling beeswax.

Have a few “tools” available for your children to use, too. This could be things like sticks, rocks, dried herbs or flowers, a kid-friendly knife and fork, and a textured rolling pin. You’ll also want to have some water nearby so you can change the texture of the clay if it gets to dry.

5. Essential Art Supplies

Don’t forget the essential! We recommend you have an assortment of scissors, stamps and stamp pads, washable markers, tape and/or washi tape, colored cardstock, pipe cleaners and beads, pens and pencils, rulers, erasers, and lots of different types of glue as well!

6. Bonus Art Accessories

A few random accessories can go a long way in inspiring creativity! Here are a few things you may have lying around the house that could be used in various ways when creating art.

  • - Cotton swabs
  • - Cookie cutters
  • - Salt
  • - Yarn or string
  • - Empty paper towel rolls
  • - Buttons and other loose parts
  • - Magazines and newspaper

Get Montessori Art Supplies Delivered Every Month

Subscribing to Kids Art Box is an easy way to build your stash of Montessori art supplies. Your children will be introduced to high-quality art supplies in every box. Paintbrushes, stampers, watercolors, dried flowers and moss, crinkle paper, and clay are just a few examples!

Each project tutorial includes a basic explanation of how to use the supplies. We always encourage your children to experiment and use the supplies however they’d like, too! Most often, you’ll have leftover supplies each month, so your child can continue creating art on their own!

Check out the themes for this month’s Mommy and Me Art Box and My Artist Box. The descriptions will give you a sneak peek of the art supplies that are featured in each Montessori box. Order a single art box or subscribe to get new art projects delivered to your doorstep every month!

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