What Painting Skills Should Be Taught In Primary School?

Written by Dan

There is no one answer to the question of what painting skills should be taught in primary school. It depends on the art curriculum’s focus, available resources, and the individual teachers’ methods.

However, some general principles can guide primary school educators in teaching painting skills to their students. In this blog post, we’ll explore a few principles and offer specific suggestions for painting activities that can be incorporated into the primary school classroom.

Related: For more, check out our article on How To Use Sketchbooks In School here.

Why Teach Painting Skills?

Teaching painting skills in Primary school allows children to be creative and express themselves. Painting can encourage children to draw on aspects of their everyday lives for inspiration and teach them techniques that can convey emotions thoughtfully and tangibly.

Through painting, children can also develop a better understanding of composition, colour theory, and other aspects of art.

Furthermore, having painting sessions at a young age helps children get acquainted with different brush strokes and materials, which can help build motor skill coordination.

At the same time, they learn the fundamentals of art making. All of these aid in assisting them to gain confidence and become more mindful of their creativity.

The Benefits Of Painting For Children

Painting is an activity that has tremendous benefits for children. It helps develop and refine their fine motor skills while allowing creative expression. Painting can also give them a sense of accomplishment when they look back at their finished works.

It is a calming activity that can help promote relaxation and an appreciation for colours, shapes, and textures.

Moreover, painting helps children gain confidence by encouraging them to experiment with various colour combinations and design ideas without fear of judgment or failure. As an additional benefit, painting gives parents and teachers better insight into the child’s thoughts, emotions, and interests.

Everyone should encourage children to pick up a brush at least once in a while, as it will surely brighten their days!

How To Teach Painting Skills

Teaching painting skills to primary school students offers a unique opportunity for the teacher and the student. Not only does it provide a wonderful creative outlet for children, but it also allows them to develop their critical thinking and observational skills.

To make the most out of teaching painting, it’s essential to provide the students with plenty of time to explore different mediums such as oils, watercolours, pastels, and acrylics.

This can also be used as a great way to introduce colour theory so that children know the effects of light, contrast and texture on their artwork.

Other activities could include going outdoors and painting en Plein air or hosting classroom challenges in which students have to paint a specific item or topic in fast-paced scenarios.

Painting is, overall, an enjoyable activity that allows primary school students to be creative while embarking on their artistic journey.

The Different Types Of Painting

Painting for children in Primary School can be an excellent opportunity to stimulate their imaginations and explore their creative side. Several different forms of painting can be explored in the classroom, including watercolour, oil paints, ink and acrylic.

Watercolour is the most accessible type of paint to teach children due to the availability of washable paints and brushes. Oil paints have a higher opacity and can produce more vibrant colours once they have dried.

Ink is fun because it gives paintings an interesting sheen-like effect and allows kids to work quickly with detailing. Acrylic is also famous for primary school students as these paints offer tremendous versatility – plus, they dry very fast and, therefore it, prevent potential messes!

Whichever type of paint you choose to use, your students must be able to express themselves freely through this medium and enjoy the entire process from start to finish!

The Supplies Needed

Teaching painting in Primary School can be an exciting experience. To do so successfully, teachers must have the right supplies and tools. Paint brushes and paints of various types and sizes are essential, as are a range of surfaces to paint on, such as paper, card or canvas. Other valuable items include:

  • Aprons for protecting clothing.
  • Gloves for mixing colours safely.
  • Sponges for special effects and even old toothbrushes or combs to produce different textures.

These materials allow pupils to create beautiful images that bring their lessons to life. With the right supplies in place, Primary School teachers can confidently guide their pupils through the creative world of painting.

What Should Famous Painters Be Studied?

Knowing the works of the great masters of painting is essential to any art education. Primary school-aged students have much to gain from studying the techniques of some of history’s most famous painters.

Van Gogh, Matisse, Manet, Monet, Bellini, Bosch, El Greco, Gainsborough, Kandinsky and Rubens are ten well-known painters whose works should be studied in primary schools.

Each artist demonstrated a different approach to their painting which could benefit students’ understanding and appreciation of art. For instance, Van Gogh used thick brushstrokes and striking colours to create emotional scenes.

Monet made use of light-dappled Impressionist brushwork to capture fleeting moments on canvas. Kandinsky sought to evoke spiritual feelings in viewers through bold palette combinations and stark abstract shapes.

Such varied approaches offer students diverse perspectives on painting while sharpening their awareness when considering techniques in other works they encounter.

Painting is an excellent way for children to express themselves creatively. It can also help them develop fine motor skills, learn about colours and improve their problem-solving ability.

If you are a Primary School teacher, there are many ways you can incorporate painting into your curriculum. All you need is some paint, brushes and paper! Why not give it a try? Your students will love it!


What types of brushes should be used when teaching painting in primary school?

A wide range of brushes can be used when teaching painting in primary school. Natural bristle brushes, synthetic brushes and sponges are all suitable for use with different types of paint. It is best to choose the right brush size depending on the type of work being taught and the student’s age.

What are some safety tips for teaching painting in Primary School?

Safety should always be a priority when teaching painting. Please ensure students wear aprons to protect their clothing and use gloves when mixing colours. It is also essential to ensure that all supplies are kept out of reach of small children. Finally, it is necessary that the working environment is well-ventilated so there is no risk of inhaling paint fumes.

What are some excellent painters to study in Primary School?

Famous painters whose works can be studied in primary school include Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Edouard Manet, Claude Monet and Georges Seurat. Other greats include Sandro Botticelli, Hieronymus Bosch, Titian, El Greco, Thomas Gainsborough and Wassily Kandinsky.

What are some benefits of teaching painting in Primary School?

Teaching painting in primary school can benefit students in many ways. An image helps children express themselves creatively and improve their fine motor skills. It also helps them to develop their problem-solving ability and teaches them about colours. Painting can also help children to explore their emotions and boost their confidence.

What supplies are needed for teaching painting in Primary School?

A good range of supplies should be available when teaching painting in primary school. This includes paint, brushes, paper or canvas, and aprons for the students to wear. Other supplies, such as palettes, containers for paint mixing and different painting mediums, should also be available.

About The Author

I'm Dan Higgins, one of the faces behind The Teaching Couple. With 15 years in the education sector and a decade as a teacher, I've witnessed the highs and lows of school life. Over the years, my passion for supporting fellow teachers and making school more bearable has grown. The Teaching Couple is my platform to share strategies, tips, and insights from my journey. Together, we can shape a better school experience for all.






Join our email list to receive the latest updates.

Add your form here