15 Fun Summer Art Project Ideas for Kids

Summer is the perfect time for kids to explore their creativity and engage in exciting summer art projects. Whether they are at home, in preschool, or attending early education programs, these 15 fun summer art project ideas will keep them entertained and inspired. From ocean-themed art ideas to beach-inspired creations, there is something for every young artist.

Let’s dive into the world of colors, textures, and imagination with these engaging and budget-friendly art projects that will make this summer a memorable one for your little ones.

1. Summer Drawing Prompts

Summer Drawing Prompts

If you need an easy rainy-day boredom buster that encourages creativity but isn’t daunting, check out our fun summer drawing prompts.

2. Sun prints

Capture the essence of sunny days by creating unique sun prints using light-sensitive paper and objects found in nature. Lay them under the sun and watch as beautiful silhouettes appear. You can find this special paper on Amazon and other retailers (search for sun printing kit, sun printing paper…).

3. Sand Art Bottles

Let your child explore their artistic side by layering colorful sand in a clear bottle. This mesmerizing project will create unique patterns and textures. You can use any old yar or bottle to make these or purchase fancy-shaped bottles specifically for this project.

4. Paper Mache Sculptures

Paper Mache

Summer is the best time of the year to explore paper mache. With lots of free time and perfect weather to quickly dry your kids’ projects, your kids can make dozens of unique sculptures.

All you need is a good paper mache glue recipe and the fun can start.

5. Bubble Wrap Printing

Dip bubble wrap into paint and press it onto paper to create textured and colorful prints. It’s a tactile and playful way to introduce different art techniques.

See bubble wrap printing tips here.

6. Painting With Ice

Painting with ice

Create a cool twist on the traditional painting by freezing colors in ice cube trays. Let your child paint with the vibrant ice cubes as they melt and release the colors. This dynamic painting technique adds an element of surprise and allows for unique blending and mixing of colors. Children can experiment with different strokes, patterns, and layering techniques as the ice cubes gradually melt onto the paper. This project is perfect for hot summer days and encourages the exploration of color and texture.

7. Nature Collage

Encourage your child to explore the outdoors and collect leaves, flowers, and other natural elements. Provide a piece of sturdy paper or canvas, along with glue.

Let your child arrange their findings on paper to create a beautiful nature collage. They can overlap different shapes and colors, experiment with layering techniques, and explore the textures of natural materials. This activity not only allows children to appreciate the beauty of nature but also promotes fine motor skills and artistic expression.

8. Tie Dye Painting – A summer classic

Child painting tie dye

Get ready to make a splash with vibrant tie-dye paintings. Start with a plain white T-shirt, canvas, or even a pillowcase. Use rubber bands to create different patterns and sections on the fabric. Then, mix fabric dyes in various colors and apply them to the different sections of the fabric. Encourage your child to get creative with their color combinations and application techniques, such as dripping, folding, or scrunching the fabric.

Once the dye has been set, rinse and wash the fabric according to the dye’s instructions. The result is a beautiful, one-of-a-kind tie-dye masterpiece that your child can proudly wear or display. This project allows children to explore color mixing, experiment with different patterns, and create wearable art.

You can also get tie-dye kits in most craft stores or order them online.

9. Painting with squirt guns

Let your kids cool down on a hot summer day with a painting activity that uses squirt guns (water guns) instead of paintbrushes. This is a great activity for one kid or as a group project.

Check out how to set up this wonderful water gun painting activity.

10. Summer Symmetry Drawing

Sea Animals Symmetry Worksheets

If your little ones are just starting with their drawing adventures they might love to work on these summer-themed symmetry drawing worksheets.

11. Landscape Painting

Step outside and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature while creating a stunning landscape painting. Set up an easel or find a comfortable spot outdoors with a canvas and art supplies. Encourage your child to observe the scenery—whether it’s a picturesque park, a blooming garden, or a serene beach—and capture the essence of the landscape on their canvas. They can experiment with different brushstrokes, colors, and techniques to portray the elements of nature, such as trees, mountains, water, and sky. This activity not only allows children to develop their painting skills but also cultivates an appreciation for the natural world and the artistry found in the great outdoors.

12. Nature Mandala

Let your kids embrace the harmony and beauty of nature by creating mandalas using natural materials such as rocks, leaves, flowers, and twigs.

Start by finding a flat surface outdoors, such as a patch of grass or a sandy beach. Gather an assortment of natural materials in different shapes, sizes, and colors. Begin by placing a central item, like a large rock or flower, at the center of your mandala. Then, arrange the surrounding natural materials in symmetrical patterns, radiating outward from the center. Encourage your child to explore their creativity and create intricate designs using the materials at hand. As they arrange the elements, they can also reflect on the interconnectedness of nature and the meditative qualities of mandala creation. This activity promotes mindfulness, creativity, and a deep connection with the natural world. Once the mandala is complete, you can capture its fleeting beauty through photography or simply enjoy the moment before returning the materials to nature.

13. Get crazy with watercolors

Summer is the best time of the year to explore watercolors. There are many fun themes that you can go with, fruits being perfect.

14. Rock Painting

Painted rocks

Unleash your child’s creativity with rock painting. Collect smooth rocks and let your child paint them with bright colors and patterns. They can create unique designs, paint animal shapes, or even turn rocks into story characters.

The painted rocks can be used as paperweights, garden decorations, or hidden treasures for others to find during a nature scavenger hunt. This activity promotes artistic expression, fine motor skills, and a connection to nature.

Need some inspiration? Check out these rock painting ideas.

15. Printing Art – Nature Stamped T-shirts

Turn a plain white T-shirt into a wearable work of art by stamping it with leaves and flowers from your backyard or local park. Start by selecting a variety of leaves and flowers with interesting shapes and textures. Place a piece of cardboard inside the T-shirt to prevent the paint from bleeding through. Dip the leaves and flowers into fabric paint, making sure to coat them evenly. Then, carefully press the painted leaves and flowers onto the T-shirt, applying gentle pressure to transfer their natural patterns onto the fabric. Experiment with different arrangements, overlapping designs, and color combinations to create unique patterns. Allow the paint to dry completely before wearing or washing the T-shirt. This project combines the beauty of nature with fashion, allowing your child to showcase their creativity and bring a touch of nature’s artistry into their wardrobe.