Art Journal

Part scrapbook, part sketchbook, an art journal gives kids a place to experiment with different mediums, keep pictures of art that interests them, and write or draw their creative ideas or reflections on art.

What you’ll need:

  • a blank sketchbook or notebook (or make your own with blank paper and cardboard from the recycling bin)
  • acrylic paints
  • colored pencils
  • crayons
  • glue
  • magazines and catalogs
  • markers
  • oil pastels
  • ruler
  • scissors
  • watercolors


There are no rules for keeping an art journal. To get kids started on their journaling journey, the following prompts might be helpful.

  • Decorate the cover of your journal.
  • Test your supplies. Experiment with how watercolors blend, pencils shade, and oil pastels layer.
  • Draw a self-portrait.
  • Find pictures in magazines and catalogs of anything you like. Cut them out and make a collage in your journal.
  • Draw a picture of a character from your favorite book. Write a new story to go with your picture.
  • Fill a page with your name as you experiment with different lettering styles.
  • Find a picture in a magazine or catalog, cut it out, and glue it into your journal. Then draw around it to expand on what’s happening in the picture.
  • Add a piece of artwork that you made at school to your journal. Write something that you like about it.

Be sure to help kids make time for their journal. Providing new art supplies or taking a trip to an art museum can help keep kids motivated, inspired, and filling pages with playfulness and curiosity.