There’s a reason why adult colouring books burst into popularity a few years back—there’s something soothing about taking crayon, marker or coloured pencil to paper and creating a colourful masterpiece simply by filling in what someone else already drew for you. It is mindless yet satisfying. Which is exactly what we all need right now.
If your kids haven’t already blown through every colouring book they’ve ever owned, they will soon. Luckily, we live in time where there are lots of free new colouring pages being offered by organisations and artists quicker than we can even colour them—all you have to do is download and print.
We’ve collected our favourites, by age range.
For little kids
Equally creative are these pages featuring the birds and animals of the Lewis and Clark Trail. They are offered by the National Park Service and are simple and cute enough for little kids to enjoy—prairie dogs, anyone?
Melissa and Doug have posted a few options for little kids, too, including a “teddy bear check-up,” an astronaut in space, and a bakery scene, as well as other drawing activity printables. And Nickelodeon has several options that feature favourite shows and characters, such as Paw Patrol, Peppa Pig, SpongeBob and the Loud House.
For big kids
Artist Justin Hillgrove is offering free PDFs of his Imps and Monsters colouring pages, and they are just the thing to convince your tween that it is, in fact, still very cool to colour. Here’s my favourite:
These Star Wars grid colouring sheets by Woo! Jr. are also a nice switch-up for tweens who may want to colour but also want it to feel like a slightly more advanced activity than what they did when they were younger. Plus, they’ll learn how to read a simple data table in the process and, hell, THAT is academic.
Also, you can’t go wrong with Lego superheroes, as far as I’m concerned.
For teenagers (or grown-ups!)
I know the times we’re all living in right now is surreal and stressful to a lot of people. I’m just one of the many who have been laid off and I’ve been struggling to keep my mind from wandering into dark places. To stay sane, I’ve been keeping myself busy by creating these fun colouring pages for those who also need a creative outlet. Please feel free to download any of these colouring pages to colour digitally or print out.
Woo! Jr. also has a section of colouring pages featuring spring flowers and birds for adults. May I suggest starting with the dahlias and dragonfly design? Or for the science nerd in all of us, download “Colouring with Cell,” so that you can colour and learn about DNA, neurons and adipocytes will you relax.
This is just a start, and you can also just, you know, search Google Images, particularly if your kid wants something very specific or wants to skim through a LOT of options. Google helps by breaking up the search at the top by some of the most popular categories, such as Disney, Minecraft, flowers, dragons and mermaids, among many others.