Shamrock Potato Prints are a great activity to do with kids for St. Patrick’s day. Why you ask? Because Irelands history is steeped in two major things, potatoes and the luck of the Irish.
We used this art activity yesterday to learn about Irish history in our homeschool. First we learned about the Irish famine of 1845 when millions of people that were dependent on potatoes as their only source of food starved because of a potato blight. Then we studied St. Patrick who used the three leaf clover to teach about the trinity of God and served as patron saint of Ireland. It was a great lesson that taught about history of the country, history of the church, and touched on timelines. However after all that heavy hitting we needed something fun to lighten it up so we made four leaf clover Potato Prints.
This would be a great art activity with any age child. Younger ones will need you to cut the potato for them. I cut the stamps for my kids at almost 7 and 6.
To start you will need a potato cut cleanly in half.
Using a pencil or pen draw the shape onto the cut end of the potato that you want to use as your stamp.
Now using a knife cut around your shape at least 1/8 of an inch deep or a little deeper.
(I did not take a picture of this part since me with a knife is scary enough.)
Now turn the potato on it’s side and cut 1/8th of an inch down all the way around your stamp. Do not cut the middle of the potato, you are just cutting around the outside edge. After this step you should be able to start pulling away the outside piece of potato that you do not want in your stamp. You might need to use the knife to trim up any stuck pieces or little details that didn’t cut how you want them to.
When you’re done you’re going to have something that looks like the potato above. I also scored an X in the middle of the shamrock since the plant’s veins would be right there.
Now it’s time to paint! I put two different colors of green in a shallow dish and then gave each child a paper towel to blot the stamp on. The potato has a lot of water so it’s best if you blot the stamp before each stamping.
This is a fun activity that teaches about St. Patrick’s Day. You can also use this for any stamping ideas you have.
While we were working and talking about St. Patrick’s Day this Princess started crying because she didn’t have anything green to wear. Yes, while she was wearing that green dress. Not to mention that her wardrobe consists of 60% green and 40% purple.
Finally we ended the day with a little science experiment, rooting a potato in a glass of water.
Of course I didn’t have any toothpicks so we used corn on the cob holders. Whatever works, use it.