As a mom, I love to work with my kids’ teachers and their classes to create fun group class art projects. Thumbprint class projects are always a hit as teacher gifts or as unique class auction projects, as they are personalized and meaningful. This state thumbprint class art project idea is a great idea to making with a group of kids of any age. It can be personalized for any state you like, making this a great idea no matter where you happen to live!
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Preparing for the silent auction at our school’s fair this year, I knew I wanted to create something personalized and unique for my daughter’s class. Perusing Pinterest (where else?), I found a photo of a cute thumbprint Texas art project idea. I loved the idea so much, I decided to put my own spin on it.
Thumbprint State Class Art Project Supplies
- Stretched art canvas
- Painter’s tape
- Adhesive vinyl or contact paper
- Permanent marker
- Acrylic paint (at least one different color for each student in the class)
- Paint pen
At Home: Prepping the Canvas
To begin, find a template of your state’s shape, and print it out. Trace the shape onto the front side of the vinyl or contact paper with a permanent marker. Using scissors, carefully cut out the state shape, discarding the cutout and keeping the negative portion of the image to use as a stencil. Affix the vinyl piece to the center of the canvas, smoothing out the bubbles. Apply painter’s tape around the edge of the piece to anchor it firmly in place.
If desired cut out a small heart or other shape from the vinyl, and affix it on the canvas over the point where your town or city happens to be located.
At School: Messy Painting Fun!
When it comes time to paint the canvas in the classroom, I recommend having a couple of handy items on hand, in addition to the acrylic paint colors:
Have each child pick out their own unique paint color. Squirt the paint onto a foam paint, and allow them to apply about 10 thumbprints of their color within the boundaries of the state design. Have them also put a single thumbprint within the outer border of the canvas.
When the kids are done painting the canvas, have them apply their thumbprint with their paint color onto the scrap piece of paper, and then label that color with their name. Give them a baby wipe to clean up the mess, and you are good to go!
When the paint is dry, pull away the painter’s tape and the vinyl piece to reveal your thumbprint state design. Using the thumbprint “key” you made on the scrap piece of paper, use a paint pen to label each of the thumbprints around the border with the child’s name. Complete the canvas by adding any other information (teacher name, school name, year, etc.) with the paint pen.
This project was a hit in my daughter’s class, and it sold for a great price at the school auction! We received so many compliments!
This would be such a nice teacher appreciation gift idea, too!
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Looking for another fun personalized class art project? Check out my fun handprint pillow!
And don’t miss my roundup of great teacher gift ideas!
Having grown up in a home brimming with sewing notions and paintbrushes, Amy has a deep love for all things creative. On any given day, you’ll find her knee-deep in her latest creative endeavor, with projects ranging from sewing and crafts to home decor and kid-friendly ideas. Amy believes that everyone, regardless of skill level or experience, possesses the ability to create something beautiful, and Positively Splendid was born of her passion for helping others harness their innate creative potential.