Face Painting in the Classroom
Providing face painting for classrooms is always super fun. I’ve painted for PBIS rewards and I’ve also shown up to paint as part of a birthday surprise which I thought was a really unique idea! But there are a few things to consider when bringing a face painter into the classroom:
A professional face painter should be able to offer quick-to-paint design options that range anywhere from 4-6 minutes per child. That means an average classroom can typically be painted in 60-90 minutes with one painter. The timeframe will depend on the designs being offered and any extras that might come into play like glitter and gems.
Now that we’ve talked about time, let’s talk about space. 60-90 minutes can be a long time to interrupt classroom activities and routines. If possible, I recommend setting aside another room for face painting and sending kids in groups of 2. This allows routines to continue as usual and only takes kids away from the class for 10 minutes or less.
Another thing to consider is keeping the design options limited to 4-6 and having the kids decide which option they want before the artist’s arrival. When the artist arrives, kids can be paired up by design, which will help move things along in a timely manner. This might also be a great way to work in a lesson about surveys and graphing!
This is up to the discretion of the teacher but obtaining parental permission or at least sending a notice should be considered. Some children may have sensitive skin or known allergies to face paint. Letting the parents know in advance that their child will be painted can help mitigate potential complaints.
Finally, be sure to ask your painter about their hygiene policies and practices. Face painting is not regulated in many states so it’s important to ask the question and get a gut feel for how the artist will keep students safe. It’s usually not typical (or realistic) for a painter to use a new brush on every child but having sanitized water and changing it frequently is a best practice. Know that the artist also has a right to refuse to paint on a child if they notice a skin condition or evidence of an illness.
Final thoughts & resources
With these considerations in mind, students are bound to have a wonderful face painting experience!