Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patrick’s Day

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INSIDE: Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting is a great art activity for Spring and St. Patrick’s Day! Create and decorate a rainbow shamrock with your toddlers and preschoolers!

Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patricks Day

Cotton Ball Painting Fun

You know I love a good cotton ball activity and so do my kids! I set up this activity along with an Easter version and my daughter told me that she loves these types of activities! They are so creative and fun and calming. A great quiet time activity for kids big and small. I have created a version for Spring, Valentines, Winter, Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. In this fun activity we created a shamrock for St. Patrick’s Day. We used coloured water and eye droppers to make a fantastic fine motor activity for little hands!

Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patricks Day

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Cotton Ball Heart Painting

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How to Set up Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting

Grab your piece of cardboard. You’ll want it to be large enough to be able to a shamrock. Also the extra room you have around the shamrock will help to keep the mess down.

Draw the outline of a shamrock. To make a shamrock draw three hearts facing outwards connected at the bottom point. Trace the shamrock with a sharpie and then hand the piece of cardboard to your little one to do the rest. Hand them a squeeze bottle of glue or glue stick and invite them to trace the shamrock (a small section at a time) with the glue and then have them stick cotton balls in the glue to create the cotton ball shamrock. Show them how to do their first.

Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patricks Day

Once the shamrock are complete it’s time to paint them!

Decorating your Cotton Ball Shamrock

If this is the first time your little one is using an eye droppers I suggest practicing using them with just water before adding the food colouring.

Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patricks Day

Once they get the hang of squeezing and letting go to draw the water up the eye dropper you can add the food colouring to the water.

Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patricks Day

Grab six bowls or glasses and fill them half way with water. Add a few drops of different food colouring into each container. We did all the colours of the rainbow from red to purple.

Cotton Ball Shamrock Painting for St. Patricks Day

Invite your child to using the eye droppers to colour the cotton balls shamrock! Let them squeeze the coloured water into the cotton balls to create a rainbow shamrock. They can mix colours by sucking water up directly from the cotton balls and placing it on another cotton ball. They activity is a great way to talk about coloring mixing as well!

Containing the Mess

This is indeed a messy activity. The good news is that the cardboard will catch and absorb most of the mess. Make sure to use a piece of cardboard large enough to hold the shamrock with some room on the ends to catch any run off.

Another way to contain the mess is to cover your table in Kraft paper or larger pieces of cardboard to protect it as well. Also dress your child play clothes as the coloured water may stain.

Total Hit

Cotton ball shamrock was such as fun activity! The best part of the activity was when my daughter figured out that she could reuse the water by sucking it up out of the cotton balls!

My kids are 6.5 and almost 3 years old.

Looking for more Fun Spring Crafts & Activities? Check out these fun ideas:

My happy kids are 6.5 years and 3 years old.


(This post and list contains affiliate links for your convenience. If you make a purchase using one of these links, I may earn a commission. Please visit my disclosure policy for more information.)

  • Cardboard
  • Cotton balls
  • Glue
  • Pencil or Sharpie
  • Eye Droppers
  • Bowls
  • Water
  • Food Colouring


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