Arts and crafts is an incredibly useful activity for kids to engage with because it helps them to develop their creativity whilst urging them to carry out a more critical thinking point of view through the act of creating and designing.
According to the National Society for Education in Art & Design, by giving your kids a good balance of thinking and acting creatively, it enables them to take more risks in order to ‘progress and produce original outcomes’. Learning to refine and modify creatively expands your child’s intellectual as well as their creative development. There are many different types of craft materials that you can use with your kids that are safe for their age range and incredibly simple to use. Here are five simple crafts that will help your child to expand their creative horizons and unleash their imaginations in full force.
1. Styrofoam City
Build a grand city with various shapes and sizes of Styrofoam, that can easily be painted and crafted to suit whatever creative project might be at hand. You can buy styrofoam from Homecrafts in either sheet format or in blocks of varying thickness levels. Kids will love the texture of Styrofoam and enjoy modelling cities, towns and farms, etc, with the versatile material. It can be sanded, cut and sawn and it does not absorb water, which means you don’t have to worry about any accidental spills nearby threatening your child’s ultimate creation.
2. Paper Mache Creations
Paper Mache can be made in many different ways and methods. One of the easiest ways involves combining one cup of water with one cup of flour and mixing the solution together until all of the bumps have vanished. Another common method often used in schools is to mix ¾ of white glue with ¼ of water. Both solutions have the same desired effect. Next, shred lots of newspaper into multiple strips and use them to build your creations. Many people paper mache over a balloon for beginners to get the hang of the process and once it has dried, simply pop the balloon and there you have it; a round paper mache ball which can then be decorated to look like Earth.
3. Milk Carton Animals
Wash out old milk cartons and use the bottle to make fun and colourful animals. In the same way as above, use a paper mache solution to build texture and provide a platform to add paint. If you are making an animal such as a pig for example, you can add a twisting tail with coloured craft wire and add features such as ears with card or pieces of felt.
4. Autumn Leaf Hedgehogs
Since autumn is fast approaching, seize the opportunity and have your kids collect their favourite colourful autumn leaves to make a hedgehog. According to www.netmums.com this process is very simple. Draw an outline of a hedgehog on a piece of card, adding eyes and a nose for extra detail. Then, gather up all of the leaves and stick them onto the card to form the rest of the hedgehog’s spikey body.
5. Decorated Flowerpots
Get your kids into planting and creativity at the same time by giving them their own little flower pot to decorate with paint, sequences and googly eyes. Kids will enjoy adding life to a once dull pot and after all of the decorating is complete, you can then have your kids plant a flower seed inside and watch it grow in their very own personalised flowerpot.