Foster your children’s creativity by helping them with fun arts and craft projects at home.
Crafts are also an excellent way to help your child develop fine motor skills while learning the value of planning, patience and persistence. Here are some easy craft ideas for you and your kids.
- Start by cutting out squares from brightly colored magazine pages. For each butterfly you will need two squares, one about 10 cm. square and the other about 13 cm
- Turn each square so that it is a diamond shape. Start at the top corner, and fold it accordion style, in folds that are about 5 cm. wide. Open up the folded square and pinch the center of each. These will form the butterfly wings.
- Bend a 30 cm. long pipe cleaner in half, creating a small loop at the end. Arrange the wings in the shape of a butterfly and center them inside the pipe cleaner. Secure the wings by twisting the pipe cleaner above and below them. Finish your butterfly by curling the ends of the pipe cleaner to form the antennae.
Magazine Mosaics – This craft idea is inspired by the beautiful mosaics of the Middle East and the art of découpage.
These mosaics are created from small squares of colourful paper. You will need old magazines, white glue, water, small paint brushes and white paper plates (or some other material, such as watercolour art paper, on which to mount the mosaic.
- Start by sketching a design on the back of a paper plate or on some art paper.
- Decide what colours you want use and find magazine pictures that are the right shades. Cut the pictures into 1 cm. squares. You may want to use slightly larger squares for younger children. Cut a few squares in half diagonally to fit into corners.
- Dilute the white glue with an equal amount of water, and brush a thin layer on the part of the design you want to fill in. Work gradually; placing the paper squares a few at a time and then sealing them in with a thin top coat of the glue mixture.
- Once the design is completely filled in, let your creations dry completely.
Salt Dough Creations – This simple no-cook dough makes great modeling clay which can be dried, painted and turned into keepsake Christmas ornaments, refrigerator magnets or jewelry. The kids can make the dough themselves.
- They will simply need to combine 1 cup of flour with 3/8 cup of salt then mix in 3/8 cup of hot tap water. Once the dough comes together, knead it on a floured surface for about five minutes.
- The dough can be rolled out with a rolling pin and shapes cut with a knife or the kids can make free form shapes. It becomes more pliable the more it’s worked.
- Thicker shapes should be air-dried and will take from 1 to 5 days to dry completely. Thin shapes can be oven dried at 200 degrees for about 2 hours.
- You can colour the dough by adding food colouring when you’re kneading it, or you can paint it once it’s dry, be careful not to any paint on the nursery furniture, by keeping it covered. If you are making jewelry or ornaments, make sure you make holes so that they can be strung or hung up, before you dry them. If you are making a refrigerator magnet, glue a magnet to the back of the piece after it has dried.
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