Childminders and children beat world finger-painting record

Thousands of Northern Ireland children and childminders rolled up their sleeves and got their fingers covered in paint in a bid to break the Guinness world record for the world's largest finger painting last week.

The event was organised by the Northern Ireland Childminding Association to mark its 25th anniversary and held at Belfast Zoo. Almost 6,000 children and adults contributed to the painting, which measured 2,090 square metres. The current record for the largest finger painting stands at 2,025 square metres, created by 350 children in Austria in September 2007.

Two adjudicators approved by the Guinness Book of Records were satisfied the record attempt met all the required criteria. The NICMA will hear in a couple of weeks whether it has managed to set a new world record.

The record attempt finger painting, dubbed The Big Picture, comprised more than 2,000 pieces of canvas which were painted and sewn together. The canvases featured an image of a house to symbolise the home-based care offered by childminders.

Before the event, the NICMA held a number of finger-painting workshops around Northern Ireland, where more than 4,000 children contributed to artwork.

NICMA started the project last February and sent childminders, after-school clubs, playgroups, nurseries and all those interested in completing a canvas the materials to take part in the world record attempt.

Director Bridget Nodder said, 'I want to pay tribute to the tremendous effort which so many people have put into this project - it's been a wonderful way to celebrate our 25th anniversary.'

'It's still hard to take in the fact that our canvas is bigger than the current record, although obviously we await official verification.'

Source: Katy Morton, Nursery World, 26 August 2009