Give your child a creativity boost by working on arts and crafts projects with her. You can find a project to make with your child, no matter what her age or her skill level. In addition to spending quality time with your child, you’ll get something pretty to look at or useful to use.
Craft kits help cut down on planning time. If you use a craft kit, you don’t have to worry about finding certain supplies because the kit usually includes all you need. Despite the convenience of kits, it may be more fun to brainstorm a project idea with your child, and create a list of things you’ll need. You can cut costs by making arts and crafts projects out of materials you already have at home, such as wrapping paper, empty juice cans and old newspaper.
Some craft projects can be completed in a day, while others need some need time for paints and glues to dry. Short and simple projects may be best for younger children. If you start a project with a small child, such as coloring or making paper bag puppets, and you sense she is getting bored, be ready to shelve the project for a day. Older children can usually handle projects that may take a few days or weeks, such as learning to knit a scarf or completing a latch hook project.
Always supervise your children when they work on arts and crafts projects. While most materials for children, such as paint and glue, should be non-toxic, you don’t want a smaller child accidentally eating them. Also, supervise older children who may be working with sharp scissors, blades or needles for the first time. If you decide to try tie-dye with your child, make sure you work outdoors. Keep the dyes away from any surface that touches food.
When to Craft
Craft projects are great for days when your children are stuck indoors. You can also take the crafting outside on a nice day. Spend an afternoon sitting around a picnic table, coloring or sewing with your child. You can also plan a party around an arts and crafts project. Invite a few of your child’s friends over, and set up a table with all the supplies they will need. Invite parents as well if the kids are very young.
Things to Make
Older children can learn to make practical items, such as tie-dye T-shirts, decorated picture frames and notebooks and jewelry. You may also want to introduce preteens or teenagers to sewing, crocheting or knitting so that they can begin to make their own clothing and accessories. Introduce younger children to crafting by having them paint by numbers, color in coloring books or complete simple projects from craft kits.
- craft a card! image by Shirley Hirst from Fotolia.com