Cardboard boxes fascinate young children. Even if you’ve spent a fortune on a beautiful and expensive present, your child is usually more fascinated by the packaging than by the gift.
All is not lost; containers form the basis for some great crafting ideas that should keep your kids occupied for hours.
1. Boxes can be robots
There are numerous online resources, including Homecrafts where you can track down the items to transform a mundane cardboard box into a robot. Paints are also vital and tin foil to cover the box is useful. The rest is up to your child’s ingenuity.
2. Playdough is indispensable
Invest in some playdough and show your kids how to create different shapes. You can always add food colouring for additional pizzazz, as well as glitter and sparkles.
The Netmums website has some great ideas for your kid’s entertainment when the summer weather has turned to rain.
3. Make jewellery at home
If you buy some chunky beads and strands of leather you can always encourage your children to make some impressive jewellery.
4. Finger painting is messy and fun
A recent survey published in The Daily Mail showed that toddlers who are encouraged to paint are far happier than those who are left sitting in front of the TV. As long as you persuade your child that it’s better to paint on the paper you’ve provided rather than the wall, they can enjoy hours of creative fun.
5. Papier Mache Dinosaurs are easy
All you need is a balloon, some glue, paint, and some newspaper strips. Cover the balloon with the glue and then apply the newspaper. You can then add legs, spikes and other body parts constructed from foil or more newspaper. Once everything has been glued securely, allow it to dry and then paint the finished object.
6. Turn a mop into a doll
Take an ordinary washing up mop. Cut out some old fabric into a triangle shape.
Paint a face onto a card and glue onto the mop. Paint the mop strands, so they resemble hair and place the fabric triangle over the mop, you’ll need a hole to fit over the face, and, voila – your child will have made a doll.
7. Pasta pictures
Dried rice, pasta shapes, card and glue will all help your child to create an imaginative collage. Sparkles are optional, but it’s quite amazing how creative the finished products will appear.
8. Home made musical instruments are noisy but fun
Your kids can always make a drum from a plastic or terracotta flower pot. Paint the pot and then place some paper over the pot, secured by an elastic band.
9. Stained glass pictures
Collect all the coloured and transparent sweet wrappers you can find, add some silver or gold coloured ones to your collection and ask your kids to create a stained glass painting. All they need to do is cut out the shapes and glue them onto some card.
10. Make use of nature’s products
Take the kids on a walk and get them to collect pine cones, conkers, leaves and even flowers. When you return home they can always make a collage from their collection.