This is a collaborative post.
Not all of us have the money to sending our kids off to clubs and activities on the weekend, nor the opportunity to bring them to a large green space with a ball and lovely weather. Often, we just have to figure out ways of entertaining the kids whilst stuck indoors and with only the tools at hand. I’ve always found that, instead of hoping that there’s a new animated film on Prime which’ll allow you a few hours of precious sleep, it’s always better to positively engage in some creative endeavours with the little ones.
Doing so will mean you don’t only craft artistic objects to decorate your home with, it’ll also help you build memories that you’ll share with your children. On top of that, you’ll teach them a valuable life lesson in how they can create something lasting and meaningful with just a little bit of effort and imagination.
We all intuitively understand the importance of being creative in our spare time, but sometimes we can struggle to think of how to exercise those creative muscles. I’ve put together a few ideas here with the aim of kick-starting that creative process. The ideas listed here rarely need more than a few coloured pens/pencils, some paper, scissors, glue, cardboard and maybe a printer (filled with paper & ink, of course!). Once you’ve got your weapons of mass creation, it’s time to start working!
1 Fancy Dress
Maybe this is just my rose-tinted view of my own past and family, but I’m pretty sure all kids absolutely love fancy dress. I was almost inseparable from my Jedi costume when I was a kid, but your child might have a genre which they would love to dress-up as, be it robots, pirates, or Pokémon (is that still a thing?). The first step to making a costume is sitting down with your kid and trying to figure out what costume they’d like. Then, start drawing up your plans on which pieces of card, fabric, and paper can be combined to create the coolest couture this side of Croydon.
Be careful with which jobs you allocate to your kids and which you do for yourself – obviously any scissor use should be at the very least heavily supervised! We don’t want anyone crying from a cut finger. You’d be surprised how far a few basic tools and ingredients can take you, and I know your kids will be very happy with the final product.
2 Finger Puppets
Grab some paper, pens, and some card or foam and make your own finger puppets! With an army of finger puppets, the creativity doesn’t only stretch to making them; once created, they can be used to put on mini-shows! Don’t allow your kids to be limited to recreating shows they’ve already seen: challenge them to use their imagination and watch what amazing ideas they bring to life.
Here’s how it works: using a printed template (which you can easily find online, but make sure you have the supplies to print them out), all you need to do is start decorating a finger puppet and see how many you make! Why not challenge yourself to create a series of bright backgrounds? Very quickly, you’ll be able to put together a few scenes and you could be watching a full finger puppet performance after only a few hours of brainstorming.
3 Tissue Paper Creations
All you need for this final craft is a lot of tissue/crepe paper, some glue and some card to stick the tissue to. Many people look down on tissue paper art, but tissue paper is a unique medium that allows you to edit on the fly, great for kids who often make mistakes.
Once you’ve got a vision in mind for your tissue-paper creation, simply tear, scrunch and stick until you bring it to life together! This one can’t be beaten for its simplicity, making it ideal for younger children.
So there you have some quick suggestions for fun projects that can be tackled together, and remember: you don’t have to pick just one!