Paint Your Own Stained Glass Windows

May 6th, 2010 by Dionna | 13 Comments
Posted in Children, Eclectic Learning, Infants, Just for Fun/Miscellaneous, My Family, Preschoolers, Toddlers

201-04-29 07For the next several weeks, I am going to feature one outside activity each Thursday instead of the regular “Toddler Activity Schedule.” The weather has been so beautiful (and we’ve been so busy planting) that we haven’t had time to do any structured indoor projects.

Quite honestly, we rarely need anything structured to do outside. Kieran is content playing in the dirt, his sand table, on his swing, or otherwise just enjoying the sunshine. Sometimes he needs a hand finding something entertaining to do, but it is nothing compared to last year – when he was newly toddling he still wanted to be attached to my hip 99% of the time. Now his imaginative play and independence have simply exploded. Here are some recent examples of how he has played solo outside:

  • Walking next to one of his riding toys, he said: “This my company.” Tom asked what kind of company, Kieran replied “a band-aid company. I sell band-aids!” (He has taken several spills lately which resulted in band-aids, hence the fascination.)
  • He “plays” with friends of his who aren’t actually there. Not imaginary friends, per se, because these are real people – they just happen to be elsewhere at the time. Last week he played a rousing game of hide and seek with “Indy.”
  • He’s been playing “house” out back – taking naps on sidewalks, cooking stew in the sand/water table, going potty on the stairs (see tomorrow’s post for more on that one) . . .

But it’s still fun to do something “special” and more structured once in awhile – mostly because it will give him fuel for later imaginative play. With that in mind, here is a fun (but messy) outside painting activity. You could do this inside too, but I’m not sure I’d try it with a toddler.
2010-04-29 01

DIY Stained Glass Windows


Masking Tape
Newspaper or Drop Cloth
Containers (to mix paint)
Powdered Tempera Paint
Clear Liquid Dish Soap
Paint Brushes
Messy Clothes &/or Smock


1. Tape the edges of the window you’ll be painting on. We painted on our back porch door, so I taped around the bottom and side edges of the window.

2. Put down newspaper or drop cloth to catch drips.

3. Mix powdered tempera paint with dish soap until it is the creamy consistency of house paint.

4. Let your child paint a stained glass masterpiece.

5. To clean the window, wipe with a dry paper towel (or a rag that you don’t mind getting stained).

201-04-29 04A Note of Warning

Have a wet towel handy to wipe hands and feet. When we did this project, it was just me and the two kiddos you see here. At one point, Kieran decided to paint his hands. Then he clapped. The paint splattered, getting in his eyes. I didn’t want to leave Molly alone while I tended to Kieran, so I herded them inside (a very difficult task while one kid is screaming bloody murder and the other was not done painting). Once we got into the kitchen I noticed that all 3 of us had paint on our feet. So after I washed hands and eyeballs, I spent 20 minutes scrubbing paint out of the carpet.

We Play

13 Responses to:
"Paint Your Own Stained Glass Windows"

  1. Maman A Droit   MamanADroit

    What a fun idea! I’ve never heard of mixing soap with paint-I’m assuming that allows it to wash off easily once you are done admiring it for a few days or weeks?

  2. Sarah

    we use crayola window markers – a lot easier to clean. Though it does sound like fun to use paint.

  3. This project looks amazing!! I am going to bookmark it with summer coming. I have four small children, ages 5, 4, 2, and 4 months. My three oldest will love this!!!!

    Love your site, btw!! I am a HUGE breastfeeding and attachment parenting proponent – your site is very refreshing!!!!

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      Thank you!! It was really fun, and we’ve enjoyed our window all week.
      And clean-up of the dried paint was *really* easy. I just wiped it off with a dry paper towel. It came right off!

  4. Darcel   mahoganywaymama

    That looks like so much fun! I was in Michael’s craft store the other day looking at all of the different activities we could do.

  5. Rebecca

    Ohhhhhhh fun.

    (is it bad that I am not sure who would have more fun painting the window, me or tater?! nor am I sure I care…either way, I am sure that George would not love it, as he and I went round and round about window clings and whether or not they were the greatest thing invented or something created to simply annoy the crap out of him…)

  6. That looks like a lot of fun :)

  7. Melodie   bfmom

    What a great idea. Thanks for the tips too. Tips for posts like this are so great. I’m more likely to remember it with the story attached. It totally sounds like something that would happen at my house with the daycare kids.

  8. We have an old glass door I’d like to do this with. It’s such a cool idea isn’t it.

  9. Jade   JadeLam

    Hehehe, it’s a good thing us mums don’t mind cleaning up a big mess if it means the children have had heaps of fun.

  10. ecoMILF   ecomilf

    Great idea- so much fun and they probably change colours with the sun! xo m.

  11. Catherine   adventureskids

    I’m going to try this with my sons. I’m glad you mentioned about covering up the door surrounds because I know I would have forgotten.

  12. Christie - Childhood 101   childhood101

    What a fantastic idea, I used to paint the windows of my classroom to make them fun and interesting but I haven’t thought to let Immy paint ours at home.

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