Christmas crafts for children are all over the place. You can make an expensive crafts with many elaborate store bought materials which often mean that they are going to be typical copycat ones, or you can stick with me and make cheap, simple, developmentally appropriate crafts, in this case, ornaments.
What I like to do when I am looking for preschool Christmas crafts is at is look though the web through many of the traditional copycat websites and find crafts that I can modify to fit into the educational art framework.
I came up with three real easy, inexpensive art projects that are actually ornaments. Some of them are good for for toddlers as they are capable of very little and these are REAL easy. They can be made by the children and hung on their trees.
I have 3 images above showing me actually making the crafts. The first one as seen above are glue squigglies.
You basically take a bottle of glue and on a non sticky surface like wax paper or even aluminum foil and you make some designs with the glue on the non stick surface you chose. (Be aware that parchment paper is not wax paper and stuff sticks to it sometimes as I learned. Get real wax paper and this Cutt-Rite Wax Paper comes already cut)
You need to make sure that the glue bottle is not old and dried out and that the glue comes out in a nice clear stream. Otherwise it can be very frustrating. Hold the bottle up high and move it around to make some designs on either the parchment paper or the aluminum foil.
When the children make the designs make sure the squiggles are not too skinny as they will be hard to work with them when dry.
After you have done a few of them you can leave them to dry for the next day.
When they are all dry you gently peel the glue squigglies off of their backing and hold them up. Then when you see that it is still whole, you make a tiny holes in the ends. You can do this with a needle or an awl. Make sure you do this to all of them. Then thread a needle and thread a few of them together through a piece of yarn or pretty ribbon and hang them on your tree.
If you’d like you can decorate them with glitter (if you don’t mind glitter in the kids hair and under their nails)or you can use Washable Glitter Pens which have the same shine as glitter without the same problems. If you want the glue squiggles to be colorful then you can add a bit of paint or food coloring to the glue before you squeeze it out. I’ve only seen colored glue sticks but, they do sell Glitter Glue so you can try that as well.
This craft would be to find any old cd’s you have lying around your house. If you don’t have any cd’s lying around you can always buy a cheap stack like these Recordable Disc CD-R – 100-Disc Spindle. You’ll end up finding lots of craftsy uses for them.
The cd’s can be used to allow the children to decorate these in so many different ways. This is really cool for the kids because they are handmade Christmas crafts and not canned crafts projects. Kids also love being able to use materials that are usually off limits for a crafts projects. It is important to let the children know that these are only for this project and that they cannot deface any old cd.(even though nowadays not that many people are even using cd’s anymore) If you want you can use what you have at home but, they also sell many items that you can purchase to use for collage purposes as in this Paper Popz collage materials container.
The cd’s can e decorated with tissue paper. They can be colored on with markers. They can be collaged on with sequins and other shiny materials. They can be painted and they can also be sewn with different colors of yarn. The children themselves can think of other ways to decorate these versatile cd’s.
If they use markers then as in the other ideas permanent markers are a must as the washable ones will come right off. You might want to get the Sharpie Fine-Tip Permanent Marker, 24-Pack , they are a neccessity for the next project.
This last idea is another one that allows kids to work with a material that is usually used in daily living. This one is plastic cups. Even as an adult I still get a kick out of coloring on plastic cups. Just give me a marker and a cup and I’m busy for a while. Kids are no different. Moms won’t be too happy with stained clothing so make sure they roll up their sleeves and cover up.
After the kids completely cover them with any designs they like , then you just bake them.
That’s right you heard(read) correctly. Put them on a cookie sheet and put them in the oven on about 350 degrees Leave them in only a few minutes until they are melted about halfway down.
Remove from the oven and let cool. Don’t let the kids near these until they are cool as they get real hot.
Punch holes in the bottom of the cups, string some pretty ribbon through them and voila! You can’t find more homemade Christmas ornaments than these.
It took me a few times to get the baking times right. One time I completely ruined the cups and others didn’t bake them enough. you will have to figure this out through trial and error. This is also probably an activity more for the home than for a for a kindergarten or preschool classroom.
So enjoy your ornament making and please share if you like them.
Do you have any similar ornaments ideas that are real cheap and creative? For another 25 easy ideas go to Handsonawegrow.com over here