Painting with Infants // Part 2

Joshua really enjoys playing with magical things like paint, and recently, crayons. His face lights up when his blank canvas turns into colour. I’d like to think it’s his inner Picasso coming out, but he is also exploring cause-and-effect…

Last month I shared with you the mess free method of paint in a bag, that works just as well now that Joshua is older, as when he was a baby staying entertained during tummy time. But he is more capable now and changing things up a bit is just as good for me as it is for him. However, (confession) I still like things to be stress and (mostly) mess free. Here is how we paint with a ball!

Supplies:Paint with a ball

  • Paint 
  • A tub with a lid – see-through is the most fun
  • A small ball that can roll around inside the tub


Add a few individual drops of paint around the tub, not too close to each other. After you put the ball inside, cover the tub with it’s lid. Now tip the tub from side to side, or just shake it (as Joshua likes doing). The ball will roll through the paint blobs and draw lines as it spreads the paint around. Joshua also loves hearing the sound of the ball crashing against the walls of the tub.


  • Make sure the lid is properly closed, and if you are worried about your baby’s surprising strength (or persistence), tape the lid shut. 
  • If you aren’t too worried about the mess, just keep the tub/box open.
  • Tape a piece of paper/poster board to the bottom of the tub if you want a keepsake. Be aware that too much paint will make the paper soggy.
  • Play with different kind of balls – an infant ball has holes, a nuby ball has rubber spikes, a golf ball is heavier and each makes a unique pattern.
  • Don’t add too many colours to a tub. When the colours mix too much they turn brown.
  • You can also use multiple balls at once and dunk each ball in it’s own colour. Add all the balls to the tub at the same time before tipping the tub from side to side.

Have you tried this fun way of painting before? Do you have other ideas for stress free, mess free painting activities with little ones?


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