How to do ice painting with your child

Freezing child-friendly paint into ice cube trays is a brilliant craft activity for toddlers in the summer.

We did this together on a very hot June day with my five and three-year-old and they just loved it.

All you need to do is pop some of your child’s favourite paint into ice cube trays, pop in the freezer until solid and then push the cubes out and paint!

Freezing child-friendly paint into ice cubes for a frozen painting craft

As the ice cubes melt, your child can smear the paint around on paper or cardboard. It’s such a great activity to do on a hot day as the ice cubes melt pretty quickly and the kids love touching the paint cubes, which also cools them down!

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Frozen paint for toddler summer painting craftFrozen paint for toddler summer painting craft
Child-friendly paint freezes easily in ice cubes. Use a lollipop stick before the paint freezes so that your child has a “handle” to push the paint cubes around

It made it extra fun having this ice cube tray which had lots of different shapes for the ice.

The great thing about the ice painting craft for pre-schoolers is you probably have absolutely everything you need to do it!

The essential items for this are:

I like to let my kids paint with the ice paint cubes outside on a hot day.

We use our bright pink Tuff tray for this activity to contain the mess! Because we’re using kid-friendly paint, the mess it really easy to wipe and rinse away when you’re done!

Frozen ice painting craft for pre-school children Frozen ice painting craft for pre-school children

The colours you use are up to you, but I did really love our pastel coloured paint that we froze for this particular day.

Of course we did this in the summer, but you can do it year-round. It works great if you have a play theme of ice.

Painting with frozen paint in the summerPainting with frozen paint in the summer

It’s also brilliant for teaching your little one all about the process of how liquids can be frozen then thawed.

I hope you enjoy this craft! For more ideas on what to do with your toddler check out these posts:

50 toddler crafts

19 low-prep outdoor activities

Summer craft ideas

Prep Time
5 minutes

Active Time
10 hours

Total Time
10 hours 5 minutes



  • Child-friendly paint – multiple colours are best
  • Ice cube tray
  • Lollipop sticks
  • Paper or card


  1. Squeeze some child-friendly paint into the ice cube tray. Try to use a few different colours so your child has a few to choose from.
  2. Pop the tray into the freezer and leave for one hour.
  3. After two hours push one lollipop stick each into the ice cube sections then return the trays to the freezer. Freeze overnight or for around 10 hours.
  4. Push the cubes out of the ice cube tray and the paint cubes are ready to use!
Easy frozen paint craft for toddlers and pre-schoolersEasy frozen paint craft for toddlers and pre-schoolers