What are some creative crafts I can do with my toddler? Activities

iStock/rogkov

Young girl painting with watercolors.
iStock/rogkov
There are endless options for getting crafty with little kids. Try some of these tips from creative moms and educators.

Play With Shape and Texture

"A simple idea is a 'sticky nature bracelet.' Take a piece of clear contact paper or tape, wrap it inside-out around a little wrist, and go for a walk! Let your toddler pick things to 'stick' to his or her bracelet! To preserve the bracelet, simply cover it with another piece of tape or contact paper. Rainy day? Cut a larger piece and let your toddler sprinkle colorful bits onto the surface -- rice grains, paper shreds, odds and ends, can all be repurposed! Supervise if your toddler still...

"A simple idea is a 'sticky nature bracelet.' Take a piece of clear contact paper or tape, wrap it inside-out around a little wrist, and go for a walk! Let your toddler pick things to 'stick' to his or her bracelet! To preserve the bracelet, simply cover it with another piece of tape or contact paper. Rainy day? Cut a larger piece and let your toddler sprinkle colorful bits onto the surface -- rice grains, paper shreds, odds and ends, can all be repurposed! Supervise if your toddler still puts objects in his or her mouth. Art can be easy and fun: feathers, pom-poms, different shaped crayons all are standbys to have on hand. Shaving cream (non-irritating) on a covered table can keep a toddler busy for quite a while. Baking with a picture recipe is also engaging." -- Debbie Propper Lesnoy, teacher at Helen Troum Nursery School and Kindergarten, Fair Lawn, NJ

Invest in Paper Plates

"Have them create a mural with their hands, and then display it for all to see! Another thing to have on hand is plenty of paper plates (cheap is perfectly fine) in a variety of sizes. There are so many crafts you can have them do using paper plates. Pinterest is your friend here." -- Mark Lehman, preschool teacher, Massillon, OH

Start Simple

"I started my kids out with crayons and colored paper. I then moved on to painting with watercolors. My daughter loves to draw, paint, and make her own jewelry with colored beads."

Stock Up on the Basics

"Have certain things on hand, like construction paper, crayons, colored pencils, markers, watercolors, glue, scissors, decals, stickers, colored pipe cleaners, fuzzy balls, and things of that sort. Then just use your imagination!"

Make Maracas

"Take an empty soda bottle and put a cup of beans or popcorn kernels inside. Tape the lid on, let them color on a sheet of paper for decoration, and either tape or glue the paper to the bottle. My kids had a blast and made music afterwards, which we danced to. Easy and fun!"

Save Egg Cartons

"I cut the egg 'seats' out of egg cartons, and we paint them like bugs and worms. We even add some googly eyes and some pipe cleaners for legs or antennae."

Get Dirty

"I send my son to the yard to collect nature items. He comes back with leaves and grass, flower petals, and all sorts of stuff. After the gathering phase, I get him a sheet of construction paper and help him write his name in white glue and sprinkle it with the dirt."

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