School holidays are here again! If you’re one of these parents that look forward to spending more time with your kids but are struggling to find a way to connect, rest assured, you’ve got company.
Here’s where crafting can help. It’s something you can do together, with your children, without leaving the house, getting dressed or planning ahead (if you’ve already stocked up on the right supplies). So, if it’s pouring rain outside or you don’t want to brave the crowds at your local park or pool, try crafting instead.
Creating works of art, large or small, functional or decorative, can quickly turn into a beloved hobby that your kids will regularly want to do. It encourages imaginative play, improves fine motor skills and is a fantastic way to experiment with shapes, colour and texture.
Getting started in the world of crafting can be overwhelming – after all, a quick search will reveal thousands of items. But really, you don’t need much to start out.
Create a crafting corner in your house out of an old coffee table and small chair. Remember, you’ll be using lots of paint, glue and glitter, so choose something you don’t mind ruining. Add a comfortable cushion for you to sit on beside your child. Then cover your work surface with something easy to clean, like this cover.
Next, load up on basic crafting supplies. Here’s a simple list to get you started:
- Colourful markers. These are washable and non-toxic, great for making vibrant, eye-catching works of art.
- Crayons. These are great for more than just colouring – see the project below for ideas.
- Watercolour paints. Again, get the washable version to avoid staining your walls and floor!
- Glitter glue. You might have read a mommy blog post about making your own glitter glue from scratch – don’t bother. Save the mess and the stress with this
- Glue sticks. Less messy that plain old white glue, these sticks are also easy for little hands to grip, and allow your child to craft unsupervised.
- Craft sticks. Also known as popsicle sticks, these can be used for all kinds of crafty projects. Build snowflakes, Christmas tree ornaments, picture frames and more.
- Blank cards. These can be turned anything you want them to be – greeting cards, small book projects, play money and more.
- Paper plates. Easily make masks, flowers, holiday decorations … or even eat off them, if you have to.
- A small pair of craft scissors. These are child safe, making it great for a small child to use.
- Nylon cord. Use this to string pennants, hang artwork or even practice braiding a survival bracelet, the possibilities are endless.
There are multitudes of projects that can be made from the above items, and all of these items in combination with each other have even more potential creative outcomes, allowing the kids to come up with whatever they feel. Here’s a sample craft idea if you’re stuck for inspiration:
Wax crayon ‘stained glass’
Grate some coloured crayons with a cheese grater, place the wax shavings between two pieces of waxed paper, and iron on low until the wax has melted. Play with the pressure of the iron to see how the colours of the wax become more and less translucent! These make sweet little decorations for the window.
Crafting provides the opportunity for your child to practice a variety of fine motor skills without even realizing it. It’s a wonderful way to connect with your child and experience the joy of creating and discovery, together. If you’re stuck for ideas, surf on over to Pinterest for more. Happy crafting!