Spiders have been very popular here at Clare’s Little Tots in the run up to Halloween (not going to lie, I’m terrified of the!). So instead of just setting out the paints and brushes this morning when the Little Tots asked to paint I set up some painting with spiders for some spooky Halloween fun.

painting with spiders

This invitation to paint was simply paint, paper and plastic spiders – no paint brushes. I told them we were going to do some spider painting which was met with squeals of joy and left them to it to create their spooky pictures.

You will need:

  • Plastic spiders
  • Paints
  • Paper (we chose orange for Halloween)


1. Set out the paints, spiders and paper

painting with spiders

2. Let them paint!

Even the youngest didn’t need any instructions and joined in dipping the spiders in the paint and making marks on their piece of paper.

painting with spiders

The Little Tots loved seeing a different pattern emerge each time they placed the spider on the paper and tested out different ways of making marks and patterns using different sized spiders and colours. They splatted them down with their hands, patted them lightly on the paper and dragged them all over it.

painting with spiders

They each went through several pieces of paper until, filling each one until they were satisfied with their marks. I love process art and sitting back and watching the Little Tots create their masterpieces. They’re always so proud of their work and love to praise each others work, older kids supporting the younger kids.

 Areas of learning

  • Communication & Language: Focussed attention, sitting still, building vocabulary, describing their experience.
  • Physical Development – Enjoys sensory experience of making marks, fine motor skills.
  • Expressive arts and design – Explores and experiments with a range of media through sensory exploration, noticing effects of making movements which leave marks, describing textures, colour mixing.
  • Maths – Making patterns and shapes, counting spiders
  • Literacy – Early mark making.

painting with spiders

Extend this activity

Some of the things I may do do further extend this activity include:

  • Create our own spiders using paper plates
  • Handprint spiders to continue the messy play
  • Set up a Halloween themed sensory bin
  • Try painting and mark making with other Halloween themed accessories
  • Create a giant spiders web in the tuff tray

painting with spiders

Share this post: