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Polar Bear Process Art

Art time can be it should be! Children (and maybe adults) of all ages will love this art activity as it allows a lot of freedom and creativity with the paint and has a mess factor too. So, roll up your sleeves, and let’s start painting!

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Activity PDF

Let's Get Messy!

Art shouldn’t always be focused on cutting, gluing, using pencil, crayons, paintbrushes, and should be fun and messy, and this activity checks those boxes. Children will love swirling the paint around with their fingers, and probably their whole hands. This is a great activity to do outside on a warm day or inside over a table covered in plastic. The good news is no matter where the paint ends up, it’ll wash off! So, let’s get painting!

🖌️ Level Up! Older kids will enjoy this activity as well but may not be interested in painting with their hands. Offer them paint brushes so they can hone in on their artistic side with color blending.

🌊 Did you Know? Polar bears can swim for days at a time! 

🍎Keep it Clean: Looking for new tools to use besides a paintbrush and hands? Consider food as a new brush! Apples and potatoes work great with their flat surface to mix colors.


For this activity you will need:

Blue paint (several shades)

White paint

White paper (thick card stock works great!)


Print out of a polar bear




An area you don’t mind getting messy

Learning Outcomes




Cause-and-Effect Exploration


Exploring how two materials interact and react to one another.


Step 1:

Start by cutting out an image of a polar bear and trace the outline of it on your paper.

Step 2:

Next, tape down the polar bear to the paper ensuring all of the ends are secure so no paint ends up under the bear.

Step 3:

Invite your child over and encourage them to dip their fingers and hands in the paints and spread them on top of the paper.

Step 4: 

Have them spread the paint around on top of the polar bear and all around the white paper- it should be totally covered in paint when they’re done.

Step 5: 

Once they’re happy with the process, let the artwork dry overnight. Remove the polar bear carefully to reveal a white polar bear in a snow storm!

⬆️ For older preschoolers:  Extend this activity with different animals, letters, or their name! Older kids will love the process of making a mess to reveal an outline of an animal or their magic!

⬇️ For younger toddlers: Take advantage of this messy activity and take it outside! Paint washes off easily from the ground or a brick wall, kids will love to take this off their “canvas” and onto another!

Playful Questions

Where do polar bears live?

How do polar bears stay warm?

What happens when you mix the dark blue paint with white?

Can you point to the polar bear’s feet?

Do you know what polar bears eat?

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