Wax-Resist Leaf Art

finished craft

This beautiful artwork mixes science and nature to produce something beautiful!

Age: 4+

Duration: 10 minutes (not including drying time)

Learning Outcomes: Explore color diffusion, wax resist, and practice fine motor skills.

You’ll Need:


Start by choosing your favorite leaf stencil, a fun frame, some watercolor colors, and grab a sheet of color diffusing paper!

step 1

The leaf stencils are small, so I like to use just 1/4 of a sheet per wax-resist project. Start by cutting your sheet of color diffusing paper into four.

step 2

Next, place your rubbing plate underneath your quarter sheet of paper, and rub with the long side of a crayon.

step 3

For the next step, remove the rubbing plate, and make sure your color diffusing paper is on a tray. Using the pipettes, sprinkle liquid watercolor over your sheet. Then let the sheet dry. For more ideas about color diffusing paper projects, click any of these links. For an explanation as to why this works, check out this post!

While the sheet is drying, decorate your frame!

When your frame is ready and your wax-resist rubbing dry, tape your rubbing to the back of your frame to complete this beautiful art!

step 8

This craft will ONLY work with crayons, because wax is water-resistant, and will show up even after the paper has been saturated with watercolor paint. Don’t worry if when you make this craft your crayon appears to disappear when you add the liquid watercolor. It will reappear as the paint dries!


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Chromatography Kit

54490_Chromatography Kit_CHILD SHOT_web

Turn science into art with our R54490 Chromatography Kit!

Amaze your students with gorgeous science/art projects! Use the power of diffusion and chromatography to create effortless pieces of art on die-cut flower shapes. Students will get to witness how the molecules of the salt-water solution push against the molecules of pigments of marker inks and carry them up the length of the paper flower petals.

Cover your space with a protective sheet or paint tray. Mix 2½ cups of warm water with 2 tsps of diffusion crystals. Stir the mixture until the crystals are fully dissolved. There may be a bit of sediment at the bottom. This will not affect the experiment, but you can add more water to fully dissolve it.

54490_Chromatography Kit_web

Color the centers of the three flower shapes with marker inks. Use marker colors that are mixtures of other colors rather than primary colors. Ask students to guess what types of pigments make up those particular colors. Pipette drops of the diffusion crystals and water onto the center of each flower. The water will move towards the outside edge and separate the pigments along the way.

When the flowers are dry, all the pigments used to create those marker colors will be visible. Heavy pigment molecules are deposited closer to the center of the flower, while light molecules travel further up the paper.


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