This website uses affiliate links at no cost to you. Thank you.
February 01, 2024

Montessori Activity: Valentine's Stencil Painting

Valentines Day is right around the corner and that means I'm adding a couple of things to our Montessori art shelves to celebrate. While adding seasonal work to your Montessori home can be super fun, it doesn't have to be super complicated. Since giving cards at Valentine's Day is super popular, I wanted to add something for Ted to be able to make some cards for friends or family. So I decided on some simple stencil painting work. 

This simple work is perfect for preschoolers for encouraging fine motor skills, multiple steps and a little precision without being too difficult to clean up. Plus some great opportunities for social emotional learning as we make and give something simple and beautiful to others. 

Make a Montessori Friendly Valentine with Stencil Painting

Like I said these are super simple! A tiny bit of preparation on your part and your kids will be making tons of great cards in no time. To make these you'll need: 

  • Tray: Use an easily cleanable tray that can be painted on (so no high sides). Ours is an old dinner plastic dinner plate. 
  • Heart Stencil: You want something plastic or easily cleaned
  • Paint: I went with white on colored paper, but you could do colored paint on white too. I just placed a small amount in a jar with a lid to make it a little more toddler-proof. 
  • Paint Daubers: You could use regular brush, I just think this adds a fun texture and is a bit easier with the stencil
  • Contiment Cup: or any small cup to hold brush and small sponge
  • Paper: precut into squares big enough to fit under the stencil comfortably
  • Tape: I used painters tape to make it come off easily, but anything works.

To prepare the tray, tape the top of the stencil to the middle of the tray. That leaves the bottom open so that paper can be slid under the stencil. Then show your child how to dip the dauber in the paint and stamp the stencil - make sure to model how to keep the paper still with your free hand. I showed first around the edges and then the middle. 

This can be a bit tricky for little hands to balance keeping the paper still and the painting motion. That's why I suggest taping the stencil so it's one less thing moving about. When they are done with the heart, show them how to lift the bottom of the stencil gently upward and remove the paper. 

Cleaning Up Montessori Art Work

Cleaning up and restoring work should always  be a consideration when adding any art tray to your shelves in your Montessori home. Here, once they remove the paper they should notice there is some paint on the stencil. I simply show them how to damp the sponge (if it isn't already) and wipe down the stencil until it is free of paint. Then, finally, the brush needs to be rinsed out and the cap returned to the paint. 

The cleaning up of this work actually caught Ted's interest far more than painting did. He happily made a bunch of cards just in order to wipe the stencil down again! You never know what is going to catch their attention! 

I hope this simple work is a hit on your shelves and with your children this month. Or change up the stencil and add it at anytime! As Montessori parents we get to be flexible and follow our child's interest in these types of simple fun activities. 

And if you try it, tag me on social media, I would love to see it! 

Perfect for encouraging fine motor skills, multiple steps, and a little precision, Montessori Stencil Painting is a big hit among preschoolers. It offers a great balance between fun and learning. High on creativity, low on mess - this guide walks you through conducting your first stencil painting activity. Jump in today and enrich your child's learning with Montessori techniques.

Support me