Crafting with Kids

Kids love to make stuff.

Provide some materials, heck let them find their own materials, and all sorts of creations will appear. The creative process is a personal one so I try to leave what they create and how up to them. We have basic craft supplies on hand with occasional special material (for as long as they last). Simple materials have the potential to become anything. Take paper for an example:  sketch or paint on it;  fold a sheet of paper into a plane, a sun catcher, origami figures; cut them into snowflakes, paper doll chains; coat strips into paper mache. Sculp with clay, scented play dough or why not fondant for a change of pace?!  Whittle away at a piece of wood or nail them together. There are tons of materials I didn’t even mention too!

Kids crafts are simple so that they are within their abilities while providing a chance at mastery, an opportunity to be in control and have fun. No wonder art is often used in therapy! Join them creating something yourself. Model the attention to detail and dedication to your own project. A mess is practically unavoidable, but it’s a good sign folks are doing things! Honor their efforts even if the results aren’t quite a “masterpiece” (or even recognizable). Ask questions about what they made and why they choose to do what they did. Finally, put their (and your) work on display for others to see and be inspired by.

Here are some recent creations:

Celebrating

For us February is a month of celebrations. Perfect- as winter has grown old and this season’s mildness has only served to fuel our spring fever  to get out there and DO stuff. And if you can’t get out there and work well you might as well have some fun (and that means cake, of course).

First Ezra’s birthday. An amazing 3 years old! He requested blueberry cake. Luckily I had some frozen blueberries still left from last summer. So we cooked them into a sauce/filling. I recently went gluten/wheat-free so we decided to try one of those packaged GF cake mixes. Let’s just say I’m not too impressed. I mean it looks great, and the texture is right but it just tastes……. not quite right.

Then for Valentine’s Day we transplanted some apple tree seedlings. The boys have been planting the seeds from their apples in my rosemary pots. A whole bunch came up so we moved them to their own separate containers.  Of course all this enthusiastic handling by little kids and a dog who has to sit on everything means that we only have a few survivors. Still it was fun and the boys got to check out the various stages of seed sprouting and root growth.

Even Ishmael LOVED it. This boy gravitates to dirt. He can find it, scoot over and get his hands it in 5 seconds flat. That’s my boy!

photo by Noah

Then it’s Noah’s birthday. What?! 5 years old already!

He received a pirate boat kit which he studiously put together- by himself by looking at the picture on the box. Once the glue dried we had some fun painting. He painted his boat and I borrowed a little paint to make him a Batman and Robin peg clothing pin figure.

photo by struggling_along

photo by Noah

Of course another birthday requires more cake! We went more traditional this time with a Chocolate Surprise Cake. It’s an old recipe and doesn’t really give any instructions- just a list of ingredients so here’s my one layer version:

The surprise is a whipped cream filling. It’s really good. It’s like having a HUGE really good whoopee pie.

mossy_stone

linking to Seasonal Celebration Sunday @ the natural mothers network