Your child can practice important small motor skills and hand-eye coordination using golf balls and paint.
- shoebox or large plastic container
- small plastic bowl that can hold paint
- 2 or 3 golf balls and a container to hold them
- washable paint (any color/colors)
- several sheets of unlined white paper
- paper towels or wet wipes
- covering to protect table and floor area
- clothing suitable for painting
For Add Some Challenge: Large cooking spoon (wooden or plastic)
Step 1: This activity may get messy! Be sure that your child is in suitable clothing and that your table and floor areas are protected.
Step 2: Cut one sheet of unlined white paper to fit in the bottom of the box you have chosen.
Step 3: Place paint in the bowl and roll the golf balls gently with your finger to coat each ball with paint.
Step 4: Place the box and golf ball container next to each other on a washable or protected surface, such as the kitchen floor or outside in the grass.
Step 5: Have your child sit with you on the floor and observe as you place each of the paint-dipped golf balls into the box on the paper.
Step 6: Demonstrate how the golf balls roll by moving one gently with a finger. Talk to your child about what you are doing and the color that “rolled” onto the paper.
Step 7: Encourage your child to touch a golf ball and try to roll it across the paper with his finger.
Step 8: Let your child’s colorful masterpiece dry and display it for all to see!
Note: Some children may need time to adjust to the messiness or may prefer to use several fingers or the entire palm to move the golf balls. Follow your child’s comfort level as he works on his fine motor skills with this activity. The goal is to show your child that his finger and hand movements helped create the paint marks on the paper.
If your child is unsure about touching the paint or afraid to get messy, you can still have fun creating rolling patterns together. (Please note: Adult will still touch the paint.)
Step 1: Limit the number of golf balls used to just one. Once you have dipped the golf ball in paint, pick up the box with both hands and demonstrate how the golf ball rolls around as you gently shake and move the box in your lap. Talk to your child about what you are doing and the color that “rolled” onto the paper.
Step 2: Return the box to the floor to let your child see the paint patterns you created.
Step 3: Return the golf ball to the container, and remove your finished project.
Step 4: Place a new sheet of white unlined paper in the box, and re-apply paint to the golf ball.
Step 5: Place the golf ball back into the box.
Step 6: Encourage your child to hold the sides of the box and make the golf ball roll around. (You may have to help steady the box for him.)
Using a large wooden or plastic cooking spoon to roll the golf balls will benefit his hand-eye coordination skills.
Step 1: Use more than one golf ball and dip each one into a different color of paint.
Step 2: Put the golf balls into the box.
Step 3: Demonstrate how to pick up the large cooking spoon and use it to push the golf balls around inside the box. Talk to your child about what you are doing and the various colors that “roll” onto the paper.
Step 4: Take a minute to let your child see the paint patterns you created.
Step 5: Return the golf balls to the container, and remove your finished project.
Step 6: Place a new sheet of white unlined paper in the box and re-apply paint to the golf balls.
Step 7: Place the golf balls back into the box, along with the spoon. This will allow your child to pick up the soon with his preferred hand.
Step 8: Encourage your child to use the spoon to push the golf balls and create paint tracks of his own.