Tempera Vs. Acrylic Paint
I avoided paint for a long time. I was happy with my liquid tempera and watercolor paints and didn’t see the allure of acrylics.
Now, for my own art, nothing beats acrylics. But who wants to mess around with tubes with 30 kids?
This was my mindset for a long time.
When I learned about acrylic paints that were meant for an elementary classroom, I was excited to give them a try. I ordered some Blick Acrylic paints and experimented with a few projects.
Everything that was said about acrylic paints was try… they were smooth, beautiful and had a lovely finish.
Then I made the BIG mistake that only experienced art teachers know not to do: I cleaned my plastic muffin-palette filled with acrylic paints in the sink. Two days later, my sink was clogged.
Here’s the thing. Acrylic paints dry to a hard plastic. And when you pour them down your drain, they wills tick to your pipes.
And if you don’t clean your brushes well, then the same hard plastic will adhere to the bristles.
A major deciding factor for choosing tempera vs. acrylic paints. So that had me swearing off acrylics for a long time.
Cut to the summer…
I was creating art with my 3-year old niece in Canada. I needed supplies so I went to the closest store. They carried a few craft acrylics but not much else. So I bought a smock, grabbed some primary colors and prepared to cover my niece so she wouldn’t ruin her clothes.
Turns out that the acrylic I bought was very (very!) similar to regular liquid tempera paint. It even washed away like tempera. It didn’t even dry to a hard plastic finish. I was amazed, and surprised.
Here’s a video that shows how craft acrylic paints are just like liquid tempera paints. Maybe they will work for you!
To learn more about the best practices for acrylic paint, click HERE to listen to my podcast with Anna Bartlett as she explains how to best effectively use this medium.
Download the Art Teacher’s Supply List for a free guide in helping you choose the best supplies for your classroom!