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Beyond Macaroni Necklaces: Fun Craft Projects for Kids

Kid crafts can be simple, fun, and little bit messy, but they’re worth it.
Kid crafts can be simple, fun, and little bit messy, but they’re worth it.

Crafting is a great way to keep kids entertained and help them develop their creative side. Just about every parent has received a piece of jewelry made with love out of noodles strung on a piece of yarn, but there are many more easy, fun, and educational crafts that you can do with your kids even if you don’t consider yourself a naturally crafty person. These seven craft projects can be made using items from around the house and are fun to put together -- as well as fun to enjoy after they’re finished.

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Upcycle egg cartons into a colorful floral bouquet that will never wilt. Simply cut out the 12 egg cups of the carton (choose a pink, yellow, or blue carton if you can, or paint them whatever color you like), and poke two holes in the base of each cup. Then poke a pipe cleaner from the bottom up through one hole and back down through the other to attach the “stem”. Glue a button, gem, or other decorative item into the center of the egg cup, and add to a vase. Repeat until you’ve got a full bunch of blooms.

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Any craft that has an element of surprise gets kids excited, and glow-in-the-dark jellyfish fit the bill. Using glow-in-the-dark acrylic paint, paint a heavy duty paper bowl in a colorful pattern. Cut several pieces of white yarn and stick them in a zip top bag with more glow-in-the-dark paint. Then squish the yarn in the bag until it is covered in paint. Once removed and dried, affix the yarn strings to the inside of the bowl. Then punch two holes in the center of the bowl and tie another piece of yarn through it to hang the jellyfish. Come evening, turn off all the lights, and watch the jellyfish light up the room.

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The best crafts are those that can be made without a lot of costly supplies --like a tin can wind chime. Rescue tin cans of various shapes and sizes from the recycling bin and paint them using any acrylic paint from your craft supply closet. Once they’ve dried, have an adult poke a hole in the bottom of the can using a hammer and nail. With the cans facing down, string some twine through them, and tie a knot on the inside so the cans don’t slip. Stack multiple cans on each string and tie several strings of them together, making sure that the cans from each string will clang with the cans on the strings next to it. Hang it outside and listen to the gentle ringing of the cans as they blow in the wind.

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There may be no craft more simple or lovely than a floral crown made from fresh picked wildflowers. Cut the flowers to remove several inches of the stem. Remove the extra foliage on the stems, and starting with two flowers, knot one of them around the other. Repeat the process, knotting the next flower closely to the stems of the ones before it, creating a chain. Once you have a chain that’s about 12 inches long (or the size of the wearer’s head), tuck the last stem into the knot of the first stems to create a circle.

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It may not be obvious, but empty toilet paper rolls can make lovely little owl friends. Stand the empty toilet paper roll on end and, about 1/4 of the way down from the top, fold the side of the tube in half towards the center. Repeat on the other side so that that end of the tube has a curve to it with two points on either side that resemble an owl’s ears. Then paint the tube using acrylic paint. Once dry, decorate with googly eyes and a beak, and use fabric, craft paper, or markers to make wings. Make several of them, and cut the tubes to various sizes to create an entire owl family.

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Music is a not only fun to play, but it can also be fun to make by creating your own instruments, like a paper towel roll rainmaker. Take the cardboard tube of an empty paper towel roll and, starting ¼-inch from the bottom along the seam that wraps around the tube, poke a hole into the tube. Repeat every ¼- inch along the seam until you reach the other end of the tube. With adult supervision, stick a small nail into each of the holes to make what will look like a spiral through the tube. Completely cover one end of the tube using a heavy duty tape and then fill the tube about 1/3 of the way up with rice or dry beans. Secure the other end of the tube with the tape, and then wrap the tube in decorative paper or plain paper that can be decorated with paint and other embellishments.

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Making your own craft supplies is a great way to extend the fun of a project; coloring on a sidewalk with chalk can bring hours of fun and endless possibilities, but making your own sidewalk chalk makes it even better. Follow a DIY sidewalk chalk recipe to mix the right proportions of Tempura paint, plaster of Paris, and water into a blend that you can mold into chalk stick form with the help of cardboard tubes.

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More Great Links

Sources

  • “10 Week Craft Challenge: {Week 4} Wind Chimes.” No Gr8ter Love. (November 6, 2012.) http://nogr8erlove.blogspot.com/2012/11/12-week-craft-challenge-week-4-wind.html
  • “Cute Owl Craft.” A Bird and a Bean. (January 29, 2012.) http://abirdandabean.com/2012/01/cute-owl-craft.html
  • “Glow in the Dark Jellfish Craft.” Craftiments. (April 12, 2013.) http://www.craftiments.com/2013/04/glow-in-dark-jellyfish-craft.html
  • “How to Make the Easiest Floral Crowns for Kids.” Hellobee. (August 28, 2012.) http://www.hellobee.com/2012/08/28/how-to-make-the-easiest-floral-crown-for-kids/
  • “Make Your Own Egg Carton Tulips.” Carefree Crafts. (April 13, 2013.) http://www.carefreecrafts.com/blog/make-your-own-egg-carton-tulips/
  • “Make Your Own Sidewalk Chalk.” Playful Learning Ecademy. (April 17, 2013.) http://playfullearning.net/make-your-own-sidewalk-chalk/
  • “Rain Maker.” Lori Martin: Pretty Little Things. (November 10, 2012.) http://prettylittlethings.typepad.com/lori_marie/2010/11/rain-maker.html

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