Let’s create some crafts! I am a huge fan of Brene Brown, as a parent, I adore her work on shame and failure, and how they relate to Growth Mindset, which is really the single most powerful tool we can help our kids develop, as they grow through difficult situations.
In Daring Greatly she writes about “art/creativity scars” and I’m telling you guys, I have no idea how I avoided this as a kid, but most people weren’t so lucky.
“85 percent of the men and women we interviewed for the shame research could recall a school incident from their childhood that was so shaming that it changed how they thought of themselves as learners. What makes this even more haunting is that approximately half of those recollections were what I refer to as creativity scars. The research participants could point to a specific incident where they were told or shown that they weren’t good writers, artists, musicians, dancers, or something creative.”
We see the cover of Time magazine shouting “America’s Innovation Crisis” and wonder how? Why? Well, “art scars” is pretty much the short answer, but there’s great news, especially as the parent of a young kid. We can do our part and do some ART.
I didn’t put an “age range” because art isn’t really an “age range” thing, in my opinion- kids can handle scissors, glue guns and plaster of Paris at ALL different ages, depending on the kiddo. When my son was a baby I wanted to do a handprint on a glass ornament and realized that plastic works WAY better with kids who might throw or drop the ornament. Live and learn, and be there to supervise.
#1 Decorate A Craft Pumpkin
This is one of my favorites, that’s actually become an annual tradition for us! Both of my kids have been making one of these since they were about 2 years old, so it’s definitely something a child of almost any age can do, plus the possibilities are practically endless!!
What you’ll need:
- A“craft pumpkin” from the art store, usually about $10 at Michael’s, but make sure you check their app and your weekend newspaper for coupons, I’ve scored these for as little as $3 each!!
- Your decorating materials…this is where you can get super creative (or keep it easy lol)
- Glue and google eyes
- Paint (I gave my kids green, black, orange and purple paint one year and they came out AMAZING!!)
- Glue and glitter (This was another favorite from years past, we did glue and black glitter!! They came out fabulous)
- Glue and fabric scraps
- Painters tape and paint
- Paint in spray bottles
- Cover your work area (I do this outside) in a drop cloth, tarp or trash bags.
- Set up a “work station” for each kiddo with 1 craft pumpkin and the materials you’ve selected to decorate it. Have a few rags, some baby wipes and a towel near by, just in case. Like I said, I do this outside so I set up a hand wash station with bucket and some soap and an old towel.
- Choose a spot to set your finished project to dry and have that ready before you start too.
#2 Face Painting
If you follow me on social media, you know how much I love this one! This time of year is a great time to score some fun face paint supplies and make a little kit to use any time of year!! Most days my kids want to facepaint MY face, but sometimes they let me face paint theirs too. This is a really awesome exercise in letting go of perfectionism. Does it look like it popped off Pinterest? WHO CARES?!? Have fun, get creative and don’t overthink it!!
What you’ll need:
- Face paint
- Pencil liners
- Some paint brushes
- Some makeup sponges
- Glitter and other fun stuff optional
- Makeup remover
- Discuss different ideas with your kids and go for it!! It’s hard to go wrong with this one.
#3 Bake A Themed Food Item Together
My daughter and I cook together at least once a week, and at this time of year there are SO MANY Fall and Halloween themed food ideas you can have fun with!
For inspiration, check out my “Fall/Halloween Cooking with Kids” Pinterest board. Some of our favorites are the Mummy Pizzas, caramel apple bites, and the quesadillas!
#4 Tie Dye
Stay with me. This isn’t as gnarly as you’re picturing it. When I was a kid we would do this every summer and it involved big buckets full of dye, not the case at my house these days. Now, you can buy really simple kits, like this one and have fun making some wearable art!
What you’ll need:
- “Bottle” style Tie Dye kit
- Items to dye (white or light colored cotton or cotton-blend items work best, remember to pre-wash and dry them before you get started)
- Extra rubber bands
- Hand wash station
- Plastic wrap or plastic bags for “setting’
- Set up your area, on a table, OUTSIDE, with a tarp (cover the ground below the table too if it can’t get dyed, we did this in a corner of our yard where the color didn’t matter much).
- Rubber band the items according to the directions in the kit- older kiddos may be able to do this themselves, mine are 4 and 7 and could not, so I did all the rubber banding, next time I will do this the night before for timeliness.
- Fill the bottles with water, put the cap back on and SHAKE WELL. Talk to your kiddos about the colors first, so they know if they squeeze green, yellow and red all in one spot it’l turn brown- nothin’ wrong with that, but a little managing expectations goes a long way. The colors are also more forgiving than you may imagine. Saturate the visible sections with color and place the item in a small plastic bag to set for 8 + hours, I did 24 hours with our last one, so no rush on the setting!
- Follow the rinsing and washing instructions included in the kit and enjoy your new art clothes!
# 5 Make A Fall Centerpiece/Tablescape
Another opportunity to get super creative and give your kids a sense of pride around the holiday dinner table! For Halloween you could fill some glass containers with ping pong balls that you glue a googly eye to or arrange some crows from the craft store on branches covered in spiderwebs! Make some “potion” jars and bottles by painting and decorating recycled containers from the kitchen.
For November, think Fall leaves, fun with fake flowers, gourds, cornucopia, or this cool paper bag turkey:
- Baskets full of apples
- Decorate some candle holders
- Make napkin rings
- Use sponges and fall colored paint to stamp paper then create adorable place cards with them!! You can even circle back above and tie dye some fall colored napkins for your holiday dinner!
Visit my Fall Centerpiece/Tablescape Pinterest board here for some ideas.
I hope you guys enjoyed these ideas, but really it can be as simple as picking up a pack of sidewalk chalk the next time you’re at Target and having a fun afternoon of decorating the driveway!
Do your very best not to interject opinion or feedback while your kiddo gets creative. There are no mistakes in art, and feeling good about being creative is a key element to living a joyful wholehearted life. It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give your kids!
If the idea of doing any of the above is overwhelming or stressful, OUTSOURCE!!
Beth Griffin is a mom of 2 who lives in Hawthorne, CA. She is a top Network Marketing leader with Younique and has been working from home, gardening, cooking/baking, traveling, crafting and homeschooling for the past 4 years. Find more here: www.chrysalisbeautyco.com