Discover delightful crafting with kids! Get essential tips for a fun, creative session everyone will enjoy. Make memories and art together.
Crafting with children can be a wild and fun adventure, filled with imagination, unexpected twists, and yes, the occasional paint disaster.
It’s a chance to step into their world – where glue sticks are magic wands and a sheet of paper is a canvas for endless possibilities.
But let’s be honest, transforming this experience from a mix of chaotic paint splatters and the all-too-familiar soundtrack of tears (yes, that includes us adults too!) into something genuinely enjoyable for everyone, requires a bit of a game plan.
In this blog post, I’ll share some essential tips as a professional crafter, seasoned with my experiences from countless classroom visits and craft sessions with kids.
Like the time I watched a group of first graders turn a heap of pipe cleaners and paper into a miniature zoo – chaotic, yes, but also a perfect blend of creativity and laughter.
Whether you’re a seasoned craft aficionado or a first-time explorer in this colorful world with your little ones, these guidelines are your roadmap to a successful and joyous crafting session.
We’ll cover everything from selecting the ideal products to the art of celebrating your child’s unique creative flair.
Remember, crafting with kids isn’t just about creating art; it’s about weaving memories. It’s an opportunity to teach, to learn, and to bond in the most colorful way possible.
And while embracing the inevitable mess is part of the journey, being prepared can transform potential chaos into a delightful adventure.
So, let’s grab our Mod Podge, safety scissors, and that all-important sense of adventure. Our little artists are ready, and with these tips, you will be too.
Let’s dive in and turn today’s crafting time into tomorrow’s cherished memories. Keep reading!!
Tips for Successfully Crafting with Kids
Prepare the area.
Crafting in your formal dining area with white carpet probably isn’t the way to go – a kitchen with linoleum floors is perfect!
Get kids set up in a place where the furniture and surrounding area can easily be cleaned. Newspaper makes a great, budget friendly floor or table covering.
Make sure your kids are wearing the right clothes.
Murphy’s Law says that if you put your child in their (or your) favorite shirt, it’s going to get ruined. Have kids wear old t-shirts or dress shirts, or even smocks if you want to get really fancy.
I know a lot of moms who put their children in oversized t-shirts and underwear only. Then they place them directly into the bath right after crafting time!
Keep cleaning supplies on hand.
Don’t forget to have the right cleaning supplies available in case someone makes an “oopsie.” This includes plenty of paper towels and/or rags.
A lot of art supplies are easily cleaned up when they are wet – let them dry and you may have a permanent problem on your hands.
Make sure you have the right craft supplies.
Look for paints and glues that are washable from children’s skin and clothes. Don’t allow your little ones to use anything toxic – read the ingredients carefully to make sure that the supplies are completely safe, even if ingested.
Suggestions: tempera paint or kid friendly craft paint (Apple Barrel), Mod Podge, crayons, and construction paper are all safe kids’ craft supplies.
You can learn more at the Art & Creative Materials Institute, Inc., which certifies the safety of arts and crafts products.
Do them when you won’t have time constraints.
Do you like to be told to stop having fun after 15 minutes? Neither do kids. While you can’t craft forever, allow children time to be creative and finish their projects.
Don’t try to squeeze in crafting between appointments. It just becomes stressful and not fun for everyone.
Let them have fun.
Picasso didn’t come out of the womb knowing how to paint, and your kids didn’t either. Let them experiment and try new things. Don’t worry about what they are doing and whether it looks good as much as if they are having a good time.
Be patient – don’t try to control.
This may be the first time that your child has ever used an art supply or tool. If they ask, show them how to use it. Otherwise, let them try first.
Encourage and don’t take over. Mixing blue glitter and black paint might be wrong in the adult world, but it’s okay for kids. That’s how they learn.
Be present – no electronics.
Your iPhone might be important, but your children are more important. Set the phone aside for an hour or two so that you can fully engage with the kids.
It will be a special time for you and them, and it’s easier to interact if you aren’t trying to text and answer emails while you are crafting.
Praise your child.
Even if that big black blob that your child says is Uncle Joe looks nothing like a human, tell him or her that they did a great job. We all like praise – that doesn’t change even when you are an adult. Give copious amounts of it to children.
Prepare your children for the end.
Kids love creating so much that they probably aren’t going to want to stop. When the end is near, give them a warning like “15 minutes until cleanup time.”
Let them know at regular intervals when the fun is going to end – then they won’t be upset that you sprung it on them.
Now that I’ve given you my tips for crafting with children, I’d love to hear yours in the comments! I’d also love for you to check out these other kid friendly posts: