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Flower Painting with the Monroe Street Arts Center and Spring Book List

Transitioning to a new season often feels rejuvenating and hopeful, especially when we’re transitioning from a long, cold winter in the Midwest to a sunny and warm spring. In this blog post, we are thrilled to showcase some of the incredible work being done by young artists at the Monroe Street Arts Center.

This flower activity can be adapted and completed by children of all ages, but is especially joyful and fun for our youngest artists. We also compiled a list of our favorite books for welcoming spring and new beginnings.

The Monroe Street Arts Center is a community school of the arts located in Madison, WI. It offers a variety of classes for artists aged from birth through adulthood. The MSAC also partners with a number of community organizations, like, the Boys & Girls Clubs, Attic Angels, St. Jame's school, Gan HaYeled Preschool, and most recently One City school.

This flower activity was completed in their Storybook Art class for children aged 2 to 5 - be sure and check out their spring and summer class schedules to find the right one for you or your family!

Before diving into this fun project, the group read and discussed the book, Chrysanthemum, by beloved local children’s book author, Kevin Henkes. Chrysanthemum is a wonderful book to facilitate conversations about self-love, compassion, and acceptance, and is told across a backdrop that just feels like spring. When we think of spring, we think about bright, lively colors, the beauty and wonder of nature, and outdoor exploration.


  • White paper

  • Paints of various colors

  • Plastic forks

  • Green markers or green construction paper cut into strips

  • Glue

  • Sponges cut into shapes (optional)

For this project, artists will paint flowers with forks rather than traditional paint brushes so they can explore ways to apply color and create texture. Like some of our favorite process-oriented projects, this artwork can turn out many different ways - there’s no one way to go about it, so every painting is sure to be unique!

Feel free to demonstrate your creativity for students first, and then set them off on their own to create works of art. This is also a great collaborative project for partners to work on together, and one that would be especially fun for celebrating Mother’s Day!