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Painting with Watercolors


In this activity, you will explore different ways to paint with watercolors.

Grade Level

Pre-K, Kindergarten



  • Video
  • Slide Deck
  • Teaching Guide


  • Watercolor set
  • Paintbrush
  • Water in a cup
  • Watercolor paper or white paper


Let’s look at our watercolors! What do you notice? The paints are dry.

Watercolors need water to make them work!

Let’s wake up the paint. Dip your brush in the water, then pick one color and wiggle your brush around in the paint. You can add a few more drops of water if you need to.

Then, you can paint with that color on your paper.

How can we use water to change the way a color looks?

What will happen if you add color to your paper, then add some water into it. It becomes light blue!

How can you make a darker color? Try putting your brush into the paint without adding any more water to it. It made a very dark blue!

What will happen if you paint with water right on your paper, then add paint to it!

The paint spreads out and looks watery. When we add wet paint to wet paper it is called “wet-on-wet”.

Now, you’re ready to mix colors together! Let’s try yellow and blue. First, wake them both up.

Add some blue to your paper, then rinse your brush. Wake up the yellow and add it to the blue! It made green!


Point to one part of your painting.

How did you make that part?

How did you use water to change your paint?


Painting with Watercolors
Written by Andrea Burgay, Associate Director

Lesson Development​
Julie Applebaum, Senior Director​
Sassy Kohlmeyer, Director of Early Childhood Programs

Studio in A School NYC
Hasna Muhammad, Ed.D., Chair, Board of Directors, Studio in a School Association
Alison Scott-Williams, President, Studio in a School NYC

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