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Edible Crafts: Tasty After-School Activities

Candy necklaces are fun to make and sweet to munch on.
Candy necklaces are fun to make and sweet to munch on.
Fuse/Thinkstock

Looking for some new ways to keep the kids occupied after school? Give your usual craft routine a fun and tasty makeover with one of these edible projects. From letting your little ones release their inner creativity using sprinkles and icing to threading easy candy necklaces, these sweet and delicious ideas are great for kids of all ages.

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You probably remember the store-bought versions of these treats from your own childhood, but they’re also easy to DIY. Look for candies that already have holes in them – like LifeSavers or jelly rings – and include other candies that are soft enough to thread your string through. You can also buy pre-packaged candy necklace kits to keep on hand for a quick solution on a rainy afternoon.

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Let your kids bring out their inner pastry chef by giving them free reign to decorate your next batch of cookies, pan of cupcakes, or iced sheetcake. You can do the baking before they get home and then let them go wild with sprinkles, candy, tubes of icing, and other decorations. Add cake decorating markers, stencils for making sprinkle shapes, and other more advanced supplies for older kids.

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Looking for a healthier snack? Put out bowls of fruits and vegetables in different shapes – round berries, thin-sliced cucumbers, carrot sticks, halved strawberries, whole cherry tomatoes, or anything else you can think of – and see what your kids come up with. Will they make a rainbow of round, brightly colored fruits? Do those julienned carrots suddenly look like Grandpa’s beard? For younger kids, draw an outline of a picture on a paper plate and let them use the foods to fill in the colors.

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The sandwich art from Funky Lunch looks almost too good to eat – but it also offers plenty of inspiration for you and the kids. Turn your next PB&J into the shape of your favorite fictional characters, animals, flowers, or gadgets using cookie cutters, vegetable slices, and bite-size pieces of fruit. Then take a minute to admire your handiwork before chowing down.

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