I can always tell when summer is in full swing because my dirty dishes increase exponentially. Is it the same in your house? I find myself mumbling under my breath as the dishes "magically" fill the sink. The dishwasher gets top heavy and inevitably sit down with my kids happen and I say things like, "don't you know there's a draught in California!" and "you can reuse a glass, stop getting more out of the cupboard!" This year I decided to be proactive. Before we got to the "speech", the kids and I made cup coasters. The idea is that each kid gets a glass every morning and it has its very own spot to hang out, next to the water dispenser. This way they know which glass is their's and it is always where they left it. Because I included the kids in the project, I think that they are more motivated to follow through with concept, at least so far...
We started out with some light weighted craft wood that I purchased at my local hardware store. I think that it is poplar. I already had the paint from previous projects. Once I had gathers all the supplies, I laid out some paper to protect my table and let the kids have at it.
Like most art projects, I am always astonished at the color and composition choices of my children. Often my mom shines through and I feel the need to remind them to be "neat" or "not wasteful". This time though, it was smooth sailing and I let them do what ever they wanted. Bug put on so many layers that it took a whole day for his coaster to dry. Jeep's looks a lot the the Great Lakes. This project took about thirty minutes for the kids to finish and clean up, so it turned out to be a good playing break.
Things to think about. Because my kids will be placing water glasses on these coasters, I did not use water soluble paint. So this is paint that stains. That means my kids wore aprons and had a paper towel to wipe their fingers on, just in case. Depending on how thick the paint is on the coasters, these might need to dry over night, so plan for a place that that can happen.
Just to recap:
Wood to paint
Jar for brush rinsing
So four coasters for four kids and four glasses. My dishwasher just sighed.