September 1, 2012

Making Potato Prints

Making Potato Prints

Stamp printing is easy and fun.  A child able to pound is able to print, which makes this activity perfect for toddlers, preschoolers, and elementary age children.  All you need is paint, paper, and something to print with. 


  • To prepare for the activity, I sliced a baking potato in half and carved vertical lines into the surface.  (Any design or shape will do.)  I was careful to slice the potato with a clean, straight cut.  If the surface is uneven, some of the design will not touch the paper, and the print will be incomplete.    

  • Then I smeared the potato in white paint, which I had squirted into a large yogurt lid.  I modeled the printing process by making one print on the paper.  An older child could  to do this independently.

  • Once Calvin saw me make the first print, he knew what to do.

  • After he made several prints, Calvin put the potato down and began to paint with his fingers.  

Painting with his fingers smeared some of his prints.  Oh well...toddlers are never concerned with the end product, only the fun process.   It might be different for an older child or maybe not.  When it comes to art, I think it's important to let children 'do their own thing'.  (As long as it does not get out of control of course.)  Their thing may not be the thing we had in mind at all. 

Extend the Activity: 

We just had to have mashed potatoes for dinner, and Calvin helped with the mashing.  

  • Here he is practicing his mashing skills ...

  • ... and here he is practicing his eating skills.

Do you have a comment or a suggestion?  I'd love to hear from you.

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