Monday, May 17, 2010

Top Picks for Kid Crafting

Crafting with your kids can be a lot of fun. Expect a mess and you'll have a great time, though these aren't very messy anyway.

Here are my three top choices for crafting with my kids. By saying with my kids, I do mean, supervised crafting and together time.

1. Perler Beads/Fusible Beads-Ever since my little girl got these beads for her birthday we've been having a blast with them. The boys love them and we even got my husband involved once. She has been very gracious in sharing them.

The concept: small cylindrical beads are placed on peg boards for infinite possibilities. Then you fuse the plastic together using your iron and parchment paper.

My son is holding the horse that he chose the colors for. We assembled the shape together on the horse-shaped board with our heads close together. I made up my own owl using the hexagon peg board. I love it!

2. Pipe Cleaners-This mostly has to be supervised because they always use too many! It's also good to have me on hand to cut extra length off with a wire cutter.

The concept: fuzzy wires are twisted and woven together to create anything their minds can come up with.

My oldest son likes to make pet dragons out of them.

Yesterday, my three year old made me a modern art mobile that I really am planning on hanging in my craft room after the flood clean up is over.

These are also a great items to take along on road trips because they're mess-free. (Just be aware that the ends are poky and wouldn't be great for kids under, say, three.)

3. Shrinkable plastic-Shrinky-Dinks or any brand shrinkable plastic is something that was cool way back when, but it is SO fun.

The concept: special plastic is drawn and/or colored on using colored pencils, water colors, or markers. (Crayons are a big, flammable NO) Cut the item out, place it on a foil lined cookie sheet, in a preheated oven and watch through the oven window as the plastic twists and distorts down to a considerably smaller size than when you started.

I used to wonder why you'd make something big, just so it could turn out smaller. (I still wonder this about felting). However, once I gave it a try, I learned. It's just SO COOL watching it melt in the oven. We spent two hours playing with them the first time.

I like tracing an image from the kids' picture books with a fine Sharpie marker and letting them color the item or they draw something on their own. My son wore these to school today.

Summer is approaching and all these things are great to do to keep the boredom away. They can all be found at your chain craft stores and you can use those great %off coupons. :)

What do you like to do in the summertime to keep your kids entertained?


No comments: