Crafting with kids
The time you spend together as a family is precious, so don’t waste it all in front of the TV! Plan a fun family activity, like family craft night, to make memories and bring you all together.
The family that plays together, stays together, so have fun with family craft night! Make sure it's enjoyable for everyone (even you!) by planning ahead and being prepared.
No one knows your schedule like you do, so work it in whenever you can. If your family isn't busy in the evenings, plan a family craft night once a week. If you have tons of commitments and are always on the go, scale it back to once a month or even just before every holiday.
Check out these summer crafts and activities your kids will love >>
Pick your project
Avoid frustration for everyone and pick a craft that's age-appropriate. If your kids have something they're interested in, like an animal, sport or hobby, try and make the craft reflect that. It may be as simple as incorporating their favorite colors or adding some sparkle for your little princess. If you have more than one child, alternate picks to keep everyone happy.
Alternate between choosing one big project you all work on together and individual crafts. Sometimes it's fun to work as a team, but everyone likes to do their own thing from time to time.
If you have time, make an example beforehand so they have something to work from. Little kids especially like to know what their finished project should look like. This will also help you anticipate any trouble spots you might run into with new crafts. Remember, if you have trouble with something, your kids probably will too!
Gather everything you'll need before you get everyone started to avoid the need for an early break so you can scramble for a forgotten supply. Keep a large tote filled with craft supplies, or dedicate a basement or closet shelf to these items, so they're all in one place. Make sure you have everything you need for your craft — you'll have lots of unhappy crafters if you have to leave projects uncompleted for another day.
To prevent children from fighting over supplies, give everyone their own supplies. Make sure everyone has a scissors, glue and other tools, and divide the paper, stickers, glitter, etc., among each crafter. If you're working with paint, squirt some into individual dishes for each child.
Hold on to toilet paper rolls, boxes, jars, egg cartons, fabric scraps, buttons and anything else you think you can use.
Use what you've got
Hold on to items from family outings, such as rocks, leaves, nuts, shells and more, and use these items in your crafts. It saves money and makes your crafts a little more special.
Think about possible crafting uses for items before you throw them away. Start a stash of these found items and dig through them before you hit up a crafting store.
Try these strawberry basket crafts and activities >>
Protect your space
Your kitchen or dining room table is probably the best place for a family craft night. Cover the table and the floor with plastic or a thick layer of newspaper. This facilitates easy cleanup, and keeps your room from being ruined.
Have your kids wear old clothes, or use old T-shirts as crafting shirts you can reuse for every crafting session.
Check out these DIY crafts for kids >>
It may be tough, mama, but let them do it! Crafts are supposed to be messy, so if their project isn't perfect, who cares? When you intervene, it takes away from your kids' fun and stifles their creativity. It also sends them the message that they aren't good enough at this and may discourage them from participating in future crafting sessions.
Buy crafting supplies on clearance after the holidays. You'll find lots of great deals for things that can be used year-round, as well as items that can be put back for next year!
Try these crafting projects with your kids