Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Washable Paint vs. Permanent Paint

Today was a great day!  Usually, I don't like when a student raises their hand to ask a question in the middle of directions/a presentation, but when she says, "Mrs. Impey, you look really beautiful today!" you can't help but smile and be happy!

I couldn't help but take a picture of this (mind you, it's not my best picture ;) ) but in my first kindergarten class today, there were three little girls wearing a similar outfit as me today!  It was totally unplanned and really cool!

We were all wearing black and grey striped shirts and some sort of pink!


Last year when I made my requisitions, I decided to try out washable paint versus the regular permanent paint available through my Boces requisition.  I ordered washable Crayola tempera paint and washable Prang watercolor paint through Dick Blick.  I read that a lot of people don't like the quality of the washables paints, but here's what I think so far of the two types of paints.

So far, I don't really notice a difference between the Crayola washable and tempera paints.  They do seem a little bit thinner, but with my younger students, that doesn't really seem to be a problem! I like to use acrylic paint more with big and important 5th and 6th grade projects anyways.

The watercolor paint, on the other hand, is a different story.  I'm thinking I may have to try Crayola's washable watercolors, but so far I'm not very impressed with Prang's washable watercolors.  They are very sticky and mushy in the palettes to begin with, before students add the water to them.  Today was the first day kindergarten used the watercolors and they were sticking they're brushes very hard into the paint and it was moving and mushing around, very unlike the permanent Crayola watercolors I've been using.

I decided to try making the switch to washable paint because no matter how hard I tried, students were getting paint all over themselves when wearing art smocks.  Between trying to clean up and just being messy painters, I couldn't find a way to solve this problem.  So far, it seems like my feet at the sink seem to be helping the clean up chaos at the sinks, but I'm not convinced those messy painters will automatically get neater any time soon.  I think next year I will stick with the washable Crayola tempera and will buy a half an order of washable Crayola watercolors to try out.  Otherwise, I think I may have to stick with the permanent watercolor paint.


Today my 1st graders started their last rainbow project for the unit.  We did not review the order of the colors in the rainbow...I am using this project as the culminating project to see who really learned and knows the order of the rainbow.  Today we painted the background of our final collage...I asked the students to fill the page with rainbow stripes.  Next class, they will paint a series of circles using the rainbow.  I am basing this lesson off one I found on Pinterest at Georgetown Elementary Blog.  The teacher used tempera paint for the project, but I am trying the watercolor paints.  I think for the circles I will have the students use colored construction paper to cut out various sizes of circles to glue onto their painting in the style of Kandinsky.  Since it's kindergarten, I think I'm going to pass out difference sizes of circle tracers and ask them to try different sizes of circles onto construction paper scraps to cut out and layer. I don't want to get into that much tempera paint with this age group yet!


Today my 5th graders created a paper plate color wheel using the primary colors.  I finally found a good use for those huge egg cartons that a fellow teacher has stocked me with!  Makes for a great tool for mixing colors with easy clean up...Next class students will create a simple symbol that represents themselves and then paint it in the primary, secondary and tertiary colors.  They will then create an advanced color wheel out of that.  More pictures to come as we work on that project!

Two of my three kindergarten classes finished their primary line paintings today.  I'm not sure how happy I am with them.  Usually I just have them paint primary lines and that's it, but I found a post on pinterest of a slightly different version another teacher uses.  The picture below is the version from the blog Fine Lines.  I really like this!
Pinned Image

Here is my version that I am having the kids do:
Instead of painting the lines in black and then painting in all the negative space with the primary colors, I had my kids paint their lines in primary colors (which is how I've treated this project the past two years).  I really loved how the teacher incorporated the silver paper, so I wanted to try adding it to my project.  I just don't think it stands out as well if you don't use the black lines.  Also, my kids seemed to struggle with painting a wide variety of lines in a neat manner this year.  I will have more pictures as of tomorrow.  Today, my drying rack was stacked to the top with paintings and collages, so I wasn't able to snap any pictures of completed projects.


  1. I am commenting just to say, I like your outfit. Pink scarf is way cute. Total artsy look :)

    1. Thanks! I know the scarf trend has been happening for a while now, but I've totally embraced the scarf look This year for three reasons: 1. My room is always cold in the morning! 2. I can wear my cute tops that tend to be lower cut because the scarf makes it more school appropriate! And 3. I found some really soft scarves on sale at Penneys that I couldn't pass up!

  2. I've been using washable Crayola tempera and washable Crayola 16 color pan watercolors for years! The tempera is a bit thinner but it washes out of the kids clothes and off their hands much better than the non-washable. The watercolors work well and the colors are nice and bright. I bought a different brand of tempera this year because I couldn't afford the Crayola this year for what I needed and I am disappointed with it. (I can't remember the name) Love the scarf! I am a complete freak for scarfs/pashimas! I have 3 large tiered pants hangers filled! Every time I stop and look at a scarf my daughter will say," Really?! You don't need any more scarves!" My response is always," Yes, I do!"

  3. I definitely think I will be trying the Crayola washable watercolors this year. The Prang ones are just horrible! Today was the second day I was having classes paint with watercolors, and in most of my trays, the green and blue are already gone because the kids are treating it more like tempera paint! The Prang washable colors seem to already have a liquidy texture to them whereas the Crayola ones are actually hard when dry. So much for that! I tried the Prang ones because they were the cheapest...tried to save money and it failed! It's a good thing I have a stock pile of regular watercolor paints from last year that are brand new!

  4. Oh. I just DESPISE those washable watercolors. The colors are vague, and for color mixing - well - here's what happens: you paint, say red, and then paint yellow over hoping to make orange, except the wet brush washes away some of the red, so the color mixing is faded at best. ICK ICK ICK I do NOT like these paints! And YES I had Crayola.

    On the other hand, I also did not like washable tempera, though the Crayola stuff is better than some. My kids were required to have art shirts, and we learned to manage paint well enough that the accidents were more rare. I often rubber-banded sleeves up on kindergartners to keep them from dragging in the paint. The color intensity and paint consistency is so much better on non-washable paints, that it was worth the risk for me. My preferred brand was Sax VersaTemp. I also used a lot of Blick's BlickKrylic (or however they spelled it) school grade acrylics.

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