I teach every grade level from PK-12th grade, and we have been able to work with clay, paint, paper mache, etc. using this bucket system for clean up ... BUT I am always open to better ideas.
Recently, I saw a post in a Facebook group about using heavy duty paper towels immersed in a buckets of soapy water...
Here is elementary art teacher Suzanne Dee's brilliant idea to dispense sanitary homemade hand wipes: she uses distilled water or boils the water first.
Suzanne says, "The buckets were 7 bucks apiece here. The sticker came off okay. The bucket holds a full roll of Brawny paper towels but you have to smoosh the roll slightly after it’s wet to keep it down below the lid. Cut the cardboard core with scissors down both sides, then remove it so the toweling will pull from the center. These are Brawny 'select-a-size' and I think I may switch to blue shop towels after this. Sometimes they rip too much; if I remember to push the prongs inside the dispenser up it’s better, but when the kids close the lid they poke them down in. I bet if I trimmed them a little......anyway. I use five squirts of school hand soap, five squirts of school hand sanitizer, and about 2 1/2 cups of distilled water. Definitely boil your water if you can’t get distilled. Let it sit tightly closed and flip/rotate every now and then until water is evenly absorbed, which takes awhile. Then, thread the center towel into the dispenser, seal the lid, pull to start it and you’re good to go."
Thank you for sharing your idea, Suzanne!
Here are a few more great resources to check out:
Need More Sinks? Try One of These 5 Practical Solutions, by Jennifer Borel, theartofed.com
Paint Instruction Without the Sink, Heidi O'Hanley, Tales From the Traveling Art Teacher