Originally I was going to title this post something generic like “Kids Crafts for Rainy Days” but I would be lying to you if I said we only ever stayed in and utilised ‘Mum’s Craft Days’ when the weather is shit. In fact, we do this quite often, especially since the arrival of Wills.
Getting things prepared for craft days used to seem like quite a lot of effort to me, pre-Wills, but these days the effort of cutting some shit out VS the effort of getting myself, Amelia and Wills dressed, coats on, bags packed, and remembering everything the 3 of us might need for a half-hour excursion out of the house; cutting up some shit wins hands down!
Effort levels aside, crafts are an amazing way for kids to express and entertain themselves, and gives them an opportunity to explore their emotions, new things they have learned, and practice their pencil-to-paper skills (handy for future writers!) I have only one dislike when it comes to crafts and that is the evil beast that is GLITTER. We do have glitter in our craft box, and we do sometimes use it, but only when I am really feeling up to the level of supervision and clear up that is required. At nearly 3, Amelia just hasn’t quite grasped yet that you do not need to use an entire bloody pot of glitter for one relatively small area, so she will just shake and shake to her heart’s content. No, thank you.
I also have an area in our kitchen dedicated solely to crafting, which is basically just a small table, pens, pencils and paper! On the wall behind the table I display our latest creations. Giving kids an area to display their artwork helps to promote a sense of pride and achievement, and does wonders for their confidence. On top of that, it creates a talking point, so when we have visitors (or Daddy gets home from work!) Amelia can practice any new words we have learned, or impart new knowledge by talking about what she has made. Plus it means she can talk the ear off of someone other than me for 5 minutes (I love my kid, but man can she waffle!)
Recently, Amelia came home from nursery with a ‘Next Steps’ sheet to explore owls (If your nursery don’t already do this ask them about it, it’s a great way to find new ideas for things to do with your kids and promote learning). Naturally, our first step was to make some owls of our own!
Yes I did actually allow the use of a small amount of glitter on this one! The demented looking owl here is glued to a small canvas (from Poundland) which Amelia painted blue (“for the sky, Mummy”) and is now hanging pride of place on her bedroom wall. Once I had cut out the basic owl shape and some eyes, I pretty much let her get on with it using random bits from our craft box. She chose glitter, feathers and tissue paper for the nose, and on the demented looking one she (quite cleverly, I thought) just used some eye shapes to create a sort of feathered pattern.
You can download my owl PDF here, simply print onto paper or card, cut out and let them go wild!