Kids just love playing with water during the hot summer months! This Star Ice Cube Painting Summer Art for Kids Activity is a great Summer art activity for kids! I know that we are all looking for easy summer art projects for our kids and this one is perfect to keep your child engaged and cool on a hot summer day!

 Star Ice Painting for kids! Star Ice | Ice Cube Painting | Ice Painting | Summer Kid's Activity | Star Ice | Life After C's

Recommended Grade Level:

Star Ice DIY Supplies:

  • Ice Cube Tray
  • Glitter Stars
  • Water
  • Popsicle Sticks (optional)
  • Food Dye (optional)

Are you looking for a fun summertime activity for your children? Painting with colored ice cubes is a so much fun! Your kids will love observing the stars and patterns as the ice cubes are maneuvered around a mat!

What skills are focused on with star ice cube painting?

Star ice cube painting for preschoolers is a great summer activity!! Playing with ice is beneficial for young children because it helps develop fine motor skills and enables children to explore states of matter as they watch the ice cubes melt.

STEM learning is easily integrated into this activity. Demonstrate how the solid turns into a liquid. Explore the states of matter.

You can even talk about the stars!

Star Ice painting on a stick for kids.

Creating art is also important in the development of the right side of the brain. This side of the brain is essential for imagination, emotions, spatial abilities and so much more! Strengthening the right side of the brain is one of the many benefits of painting with ice cubes.

Plus, you will be developing your child’s fine motor skills as he/she manipulates the ice cube around the tray or mat. You can switch tools for this sensory activity to help further develop fine motor skills and hand/eye coordination.

How do I make Star Ice?

You will need to plan ahead to create star ice!

Supplies for making star ice cube painting. Pink silicone ice cube mold, glitter stars in various colors, sucker sticks, and water.


  • First, pour the water until the tray is about 3/4 full. Do not overfill.
  • Add in the desired amount of confetti stars.
  • If you are adding food coloring or paint, you will want to do that before adding the water or glitter.
  • Place in the freezer. Allow to freeze.
  • If you plan to use popsicle sticks, wait until the cubes are partially frozen and put the sticks into the cubes. Your child can then use the popsicle stick to move the cube during this fun summer craft.
Water and glitter stars in a pink silicone ice tray.

How do I use the star ice cubes?

This is a great summer craft idea!

Once the ice cubes are frozen, they are ready for sensory play!
Gently empty the ice cube tray onto a sensory mat or tray. You may want to use a darker colored try or paper so it looks like the night sky!

Before you let your learner explore with the ice cube, be sure to tell them that this is an arts and crafts activity and the ice isn’t for eating!

Make sure to emphasize that this summer craft for kids doesn’t belong in their mouths!

Have your child move the ice around the mat.Watch as it melts and creates a path of stars!

Continue this fun summer art project for preschoolers until the ice is completely melted. Depending on the weather, this could take awhile! Have fun!

Star ice paint sticks in a pink silicone ice mold.

How else can I use star ice?

  • Discuss how the ice cube changes from a solid to liquid. You can even show your child how to change the liquid back into a solid! Discuss the states of matter!
  • When preparing the ice cubes, add food coloring or paint to add some “color” to the activity to work on colors.
  • If you are working on color identification, ask your young learner to choose a specific color ice cube to paint.
  • Print and laminate large alphabet or number mats. There are many free printables online. Have your child use the ice paints to trace the letters or numbers on the mat. Yeah for sneaking in some academics!
  • Print and laminate dot to dot sheets. Have your child follow the dots using their ice cube! Many alphabet and number dot to dots can be found online!
  • For even more fine motor practice, have your child use a tongs for this ice painting activity.
  • Read some nonfiction literature about stars. Have students observe the nighttime sky and discuss what they observed.
  • Have students illustrate the nighttime sky on black paper.
  • Experiment with ways to make the ice cubes melt more slowly or quickly. You can even have ice cube races!

Find even more engaging activities in the Life Over C’s shop!

star ice painting activity for preschoolers
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author avatar
Kim Staten Owner and Curriculum Designer
Kim Staten is a mother of four children ages 20, 19, 16, and 12. Kim has taught at the preschool, kindergarten and early elementary levels for 16 years. With extensive experience working with special needs children, including her own children with special needs (Rett Syndrome, autism, anxiety, and ADHD), she creates hands-on curricula and activities that are great for working with children of all abilities in the classroom and at home. Hands-on, accessible activities are her passion. 

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