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Bubble Wrap Print
from First Art

First Art MaryAnn Kohl

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Bubble Wrap Print from First Art

Bubble wrap is fun to explore—feeling the puffy bubble pouches and noisily popping them. After exploring, bubble wrap becomes an intriguing printing material with unusually beautiful results.


  • newspaper
  • bubble wrap (any size bubbles), approximately 9 ”x 12”or larger (25 cm x 30 cm or larger) (Note: big bubbles make big dots, and little bubbles make little dots)
  • masking tape
  • tempera paints
  • shallow baking pan
  • paintbrush
  • large sheets of paper
  • wet sponge
bubble wrap print


Prepare: (adult)

1. Cover a table with newspaper, if needed, then place a sheet of bubble wrap on the table, taping down corners to hold.

2. Place a shallow baking pan next to the bubble wrap. Put several puddles of different colors of paint in the pan. Place a paintbrush next to the pan. If needed, place loops of masking tap to keep it from sliding around the table.

3. Have a stack of extra paper handy for multiple prints. Be sure the paper is larger than the wrap.

Process: (child)

1. Paint directly on the bubble wrap with as many colors as desired. The more colors, the merrier!

2. When the bubble wrap is covered with colors, press a sheet of paper onto the bubble wrap and lift off a multi-colored print.

3. Remove the print to a drying area and repeat with fresh paper. If bubble wrap becomes murky with color, simply wipe it off with a wet sponge and begin again.


1. Allow children to explore feeling and popping the bubble wrap before expecting them to paint on it. Who can resist popping those clear, smooth bubble pouches? Let children pop and play first and the painting activity will go much more smoothly.

2. Toddlers and twos are often more captivated by mixing the paints in the baking pan than painting on the bubble wrap.


Explore lifting prints from other textured materials. Suggestions include:

• burlap scrap
• grass
gravel path
• muffin tin

• plywood scrap
uncrumpled aluminum foil
• welcome mat
• wire screen

Explore lifting prints from items glued to cardboard. Suggestions include:

• buttons
• bingo markers
• bottle caps
• masking tape

• leather strips
• Band-aids
• yarn
• string


copyright © 2012 MaryAnn Kohl
This article/art activity is copyright protected.

Permission is granted to reprint one copy for personal use only.
Please contact or 800-480-4278 for permission to reprint
multiple copies or to disperse.

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