Thursday, November 12, 2009
Brendan's 10 Kid Crafts Picks
B has a "craft bag" that lives in our dining room should the crafting mood strike. Figuring out what he likes and what works well has been a bit hit and miss so I thought I'd share his current favorites as well as a recent collage from his crafting efforts.
1. Punches - These, technically, aren't in his bag, but pulled from my scrapbooking collection. Periodically we take a bunch out and punch lots of shapes out of leftover scrapbook paper. The shapes go into his "stash" of collage materials. These *Fiskar squeeze type punches work the best as he can, sometimes, do them himself. The kinds that you push from above require more adult assistance. You can find a large assortment of punches in the scrapbook area of your local craft store. They are even on sale at Hobby Lobby this week. At the change of seasons/holidays they also go on sale. For instance, this week at Michaels I got a Martha Stewart bat punch for $4 (70% off Michaels original price). Otherwise, find a coupon as they run around $15 each. (I "think" the circle above as well as these sun and the Martha Stewart leaf punches are his favorite)
2. Google Eyes - No clue why, but these are his favorite just now and he'd glue them to ANYTHING. We have a variety of shapes and sizes. We adhere them with a glue stick, regular elmers or if we're feeling fancy "Glue Dots."
3. Stamps & Stamp pads - My Aunt Laurie gave us a variety of stamps, including many fun dinosaur ones. We also use some from my collection as well as several colors of stamp pads. I don't have a favorite brand. We just use whatever is around. Somewhat high mess factor and check to see if ink is washable.
4. Glue sticks - MUCH less messy than regular glue, although we use both. Did you know they have them now that go on as a color and then dry clear (Here's an example). This is great with kids as they can see where the glue is. Now I just need some that magically gets its cap back on or doesn't dry out.
5. Safety scissors - B is relatively new to scissors and we're still working on form, but he loves them.
6. Washable Markers - He prefers markers to crayons and always has. We have a couple different kinds. The ones that only work on the "special" paper are OK, but he doesn't really love them.
7. Stickers! - B gets the rejects from my scrap stash, but also has some of his own. Aunt Audra bought him a sticker book and he is also still working his way through this awesome coloring/stickers book of Cars stickers from last Christmas!! It has more than 700 stickers.... that are now all over the house. You can find these books with various characters at Hobby Lobby pretty often.
8. Paper - We have plain notebook paper or printer paper always in his bag, but he gets to play with scraps from my scrapbook stash and occasionally get some very special paper of his own like the robot paper in this collage.
9. Pipe cleaners- New to these and he's still a bit young, but he's been toting around his pipe cleaner flower we made together all week.
10 --- the ultimate key to kid crafting as far as we can tell--- Adults!! - your attention, help, ideas, praise and cooperation are key. You are the kid's in your life's best learning tool. Even if you don't craft or think you have no ideas, they will love it that you are there creating with them. Google whatever you like plus crafts and you can often find great, simple, fun projects. Call or e-mail us and we'll gladly help you get started.
Realistically, you don't need any of the above. Do you have some tape and some junk mail laying around? You're set. How about some coffee filters or pens? - golden. As you may notice from my list way more than half of that is things we already had that we've just re-purposed. Sure, we didn't have googly eyes, but after using them at a project at the zoo they joined our collection. Crafting is great as you are empowering your kids to create, helping with hand-eye coordination and sharing time working together building long-term bonds. Come join us. It is lots of fun!
* FYI - Amazon links are affiliate links. Should you buy something through them I get some tiny fraction of a cent. It isn't the motivation for my blogging or this post, but want to make sure you have full disclosure hence the "blog with integrity" patch on the left hand side of my blog.