Tide Pool Art for Kids

Children will love making these simple tide pool art projects. (They especially love the sensory aspect of the added real sand!) They are perfect for any children interested in sea life or to go with an ocean unit and can be adapted for any age.

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Love the sensory aspect of this! (Tidepool Art Project for Kids)~ BuggyandBuddy.com


Not only is the California coastline absolutely gorgeous, it also provides a wonderful learning opportunity~ tide pools! Observing various forms of sea life in the tide pools with your children is such a great way to build on their natural curiosity and wonder about the world around them. Lucy and Theo are always excited to find little crabs, sea stars, and anemones around our rocky tide pools nearby.


We have been having so much fun with tide pools that we decided to create some beautiful tide pool artwork. Kids love adding real sand to their project making this a great sensory activity, and it’s perfect for toddlers, preschoolers, and on up! (This post contains affiliate links.)


Tide Pool Art for Kids

Tide Pool Art Project for Kids

Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy

Materials for Tide Pool Art


Directions for Tide Pool Art

1. Use a blue crayon or oil pastel to draw the shape of your tide pool on the watercolor paper. You can leave the paper rectangular or cut it to be more rounded like we did.


Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy


2. Use oil pastels or crayons to draw sea life inside your tide pool. (Lucy and I had previously read lots of books about sea life and tide pools so we had lots of ideas for what to put in ours!)


Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy

Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy


3. Use blue watercolor to paint inside your tide pool. You can paint right over the oil pastel or crayon drawings. (The oil pastels usually show up more vibrantly after painting, but most crayons work too.)


Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy


4. Now paint the area representing the sand outside the tide pool using brown watercolor.


5. Once your painting is dry, it’s time to glue on the sand. Place some liquid glue on a paper plate or inside a little bowl or cup so it’s easily accessible to your child. Use a paintbrush to paint glue over the brown paint.


Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy


6. Sprinkle sand on top of the glue.


Tide Pool Art for Kids~ Buggy and Buddy


7. Shake off the excess sand and let it dry!


Tide Pool Art for Kids- Buggy and Buddy

Here you can see the finished artwork from myself, Lucy (age 5) and Theo (age 2). We all enjoyed making our tide pool art- such a fun activity to do together!

Love the sensory aspect of this! (Tidepool Art Project for Kids)~ BuggyandBuddy.com


  1. Beautiful! I love connecting art with experiences.

  2. What an awesome connection of nature to art and literature. Sadly, we rarely get out to the beach and are yet to see tide pools in nature. We saw them only in Monterrey Aquarium.

  3. What a cute idea!
    I think I just might have to make tide pools with my girls 🙂

  4. I love this, very cute. My girls would have such fun. x

  5. What a great way to talk about tidepools!

  6. Debbie @ http://kidsbibledebjackson.blogspot.com/ says:

    This is so cute! Looks like fun! Thanks for sharing at Mom’s Library!

  7. I love this project! Thanks so much for the inspiration.

  8. I love this! Such a great art project! We’ve been to the tide pools a few times…and love it. We’ll have to create our own tide pool art project. 🙂

  9. Such a great craft! I love ideas that work across the grade levels. Thanks for linking at the After School linkup!

  10. This is such a great looking craft with such simple ideas & lots of learning too! Sea life i think is the absolute most interesting to children. I think its their curiosity & mystry of the under-water world thats soo intriguing to them! Ok ok and ME ;D Thank you for sharing this craft and may i say what a fabulous bunch of LINKYS TOO!!!;)


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  4. […] Watercolor Paper: When painting with watercolors, you do want a pretty good paper to hold all the liquid, especially with young children since they often use a LOT of paint. And we use watercolors very frequently. This is one of those items I mentioned before that I buy with my coupon at our local craft store. This watercolor paper on Amazon is also a decent price. (You can see how we use watercolors with this tide pool art project for kids.) […]

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  6. […] Tide Pool Pictures This colorful tide pool from Buggy and Buddy is bustling with sea life. Encourage your little artist to draw her favorite sea creatures before encircling the tide pool with a little sand. A great art and sensory craft for all ages, find the list of materials and how-to here. […]

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