The concept of symmetry came up recently in Lena's math curriculum. We went through the textbook definition, drew a few lines of symmetry on basic shapes and moved on. But I kept thinking about how it would be so much more fun to really explore the idea of symmetry and incorporate it into a beautiful painting project. Lena LOVES to paint, so we're always looking for an excuse to break out the brushes, and anytime you can make math fun it really helps to solidify the learning!
This Symmetry Squish Painting can be just a simple process art project, or you can use it to supplement a math lesson. Either way, it's fun and easy, and makes beautiful pictures!
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Gather painting materials. We love using Crayola Washable Kids Paint and Crayola Paint Brushes. You'll also need some paper- we used 18" x 24" white construction paper, but in hindsight a nicer quality paper would have been better- our white paper wasn't very white!
Fold the paper in half, either on a horizonal or vertical axis. You could even cut your paper into a square and then fold on the diagonal. The fold line is to give your child a visual reminder of where to paint.
Let your child paint on one half of the paper. Encourage them to use plenty of paint so that there will be enough to transfer to the other half when you squish.
You'll also want to encourage your child to work quickly, so that the paint doesn't dry too soon.
When your child is satisfied with their painting, fold the paper on the line of symmetry that you originally created. Press and rub all over. This was Lena's favorite part!
Time for the big reveal! Slowly peel the halves apart to see your Symmetry Squish Painting!
Point out how the two halves are the same, and that the line of symmetry divides mirror images. You can ask your child to find the matching elements on each half of the painting.
Lena didn't like that the printed side wasn't as bright and painty as the original painted side, so she supplemented it with some more paint!
Eventually, she got the hang of using LOTS of paint so that the squish prints would be bright and colorful.
Lena ALWAYS paints rainbows, so I wasn't surprised at all when she made this beautiful blobby version!
And this one is pretty fun, too!
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