Thursday, October 22, 2009

Glue Resist Skeletons

Earlier this year I did a glue resist dinosaur with Kindergarten. I thought it would make an interesting project for Halloween so here it is.

Materials Required:

heavy paper like posterboard or watercolor
white glue
tempera paint
large round coin or bottle top
extra paper for detail work

Draw out your skeleton scene in pencil first. At school I gave the kids lots of reference photos of skeletons and I had them focus on a basic line drawing.
Don't worry too much about getting the shape of the bones correct. It's a spooky picture so the skeletons actually look better if they are not too perfect.

Using white glue on a flat surface go over the drawing. I reminded the kids to be careful not to fill in the eyes or mouth of the skeleton.

You can even pencil in an x in those places to help them remember.

When the skeletons are covered with glue set aside to dry. Make sure it is a flat surface as you don't want the glue to run.

When the glue is dry get set up for painting. before you start take your coin or round lid and place in the middle of a kleenex.

Gather the kleenex around it and twist together.
Set aside by your painting area.

Start painting in your sky. Its night time but to add some extra interest you can paint in the last remnants of the sunset.

Before the sky has dried take your kleenex wrapped a good spot for your moon and press into the painting. The kleenex will lift off a moon shape the same size as your coin or lid.

Continue painting in your ground area. Wherever the glue is will resist the paint.

When dry you can add some extra details with paper. At school the kids added jack o lanterns.

Have a bit of fun with it.

That's it.
Why not make a spooky skeleton picture today.
See you next time.


  1. Hi I am a mixed media artists (paper mache) but i love skeletons & most anythign to do with them. When i was younger we used to do somthing similar in art classes using white wax. This idea of using white glue however is such a brilliant twist it's swesome. I love it.

  2. This is great. I can't wait to try it. Thanks so much for sharing this.

  3. you are amazing! I have a 5 year old and we are both artist. I love stuff like this and am glad I found your blog!

  4. I love it....30 year art teacher and still love to search for new ideas...GREAT JOB!

  5. Me again. Thankyou once again for the kind permission granted me. I have NOW posted my little article & 'link' back to your blog here. I hope it generates some more interest to you & your marvellous blog. Keep those idea's coming. I love to inspire, but love being inspred just as much which you have done already. I'm hooked & would love more insperation lol. Brillant stuff.


    When things fall to pieces - Make those pieces into something

  6. What a wonderful art activity! I hope we'll get a chance (or make a chance) to give it a try.

  7. I like your idea for making the moon. Good results and simple.

  8. i love love love this blog.
    i don't know how i found it, but will have many happy returns.
    Thanks for taking so much time to teach all of us.

  9. I did this project with my 3rd graders. We used white Elmers school glue , but it did not resist the glue. All we could see were the pencil lines under the glue and the paint painted right over them. Not sure what we did wrong. Started out great...any suggestions for next time?

  10. Hey Haley,
    the only thing I can think that went wrong may have been that your paint was too school we used tempera disks(not liquid tempera) and the paint was can also make a pass over the skeletons with a paintbrush that just has water...if you used waterbased paint you can try this now with your 3rd graders to "rescue" your artwork. The skeletons will always have a bit of paint residue on them but you should be able to see them quite clearly.
    Hope this helps and I'm so sorry it didn't turn out for you.

  11. I had the same problem.We tried using the disks of paint and it didn't resist. I used heavy water colour paper and normal white school glue.

    We will try your suggestions.

    The students loved drawing the skeletons.

  12. I can't believe I missed this! That is what I get for not keeping up with reading blogs. I am bookmarking this for next year. Maybe use it as part of my Dia de Muertos shrine.

  13. What about sprinkling salt on it to create stars?

  14. This is so older kids will love doing this!

  15. my daughter did this today in school! she loved it and it opened her up to endless creative, spooky ideas!

  16. You are such an amazing artist and I'm seventeen but even I want to try some of your art. You're so creative :)