Whether you are a babysitter, a nanny, a mother or even a grandmother, we all know that kids need to be entertained. And entertaining kids can get quite extreme sometimes.
I'm a babysitter myself and sometimes require fun ideas to get this little boy busy. So for those of you in need of some fun and creative activities, here are a few that I'm sure you will enjoy as much as the kids do. I know I have fun doing them.
These craft projects are very easy to make and use materials found around the house, such as egg cartons, toilet rolls, cardboard boxes, paper, newspaper, glue, paint, etc. And they will definitely provide hours of fun both for you and the kids.
So here's a list of arts and craft ideas.
Papier Maché piggy bank What you will need:
Newspaper Flour (1 cup) and Water
- A balloon (colour does not matter)
- A paintbrush
- Colourful Paint
- Egg cartons
Start by preparing the non-toxic glue. Put a cup of flour in a medium bowl and add water a little bit at a time, mixing the paste at the same time. You'll know the glue is ready when you get a thick texture with no lumps, that looks a lot like proper glue.
Then, tear as many strips as you can out of half the newspaper and use the other half to protect whatever it is you will be working on.
Blow the balloon up to the size you want. It can be a small piggy bank or a big one. You chose.
Once that is done, you are ready to start your papier maché.
Method Step 1: Now to make the papier maché you have to take a strip of newspaper and cover it with the glue you made. Then hold your balloon face up (with the knot at the bottom) and glue one end of the strip to the bottom and with your hand glue the strip vertically, right to the top centre. Repeat this step as many times as you need to cover the whole balloon. You have your first layer of papier maché.
Step 2: You will need to make at least 4 to 6 layers for your papier maché to be solid. So, you will have to repeat the layers, letting every layer dry a bit in between, until you have really covered the whole balloon with a thick layer of newspaper. A good thing to do is change the way you glue the strips. The first step has to be vertical but the next ones can be horizontal or side ways it doesn't matter. As long as you have covered the whole surface in every layer.
WARNING: Do not glue anything over the knot you have made on the balloon. Always leave a little hole on the knot when you glue the strips.
Step 3: Let the balloon dry for about an hour. If it's sunny you could put it outside it would dry faster. Be careful it doesn't blow away.
Step 4: Once the balloon is dry you will notice how hard it has become. That's a good sign. Now you are ready to pop the balloon inside and carefully remove it from the hole I was talking about. Hold the end of the balloon tight when you blow it in case the whole balloon goes inside. It will be hard to remove once inside.
Step 5: When you're done removing the balloon you now have to think of what animal you will be doing. I know a piggy bank is supposed to be a pig, but you can be creative and make something else. I don't know, a penguin or some other easy animal.
Let's say we're doing a pig because this is what everyone will do the first time around. You will need to cut out the egg carton to make the nose, use the part where the egg fits in, that's perfect for the nose. For the ears you can cut out two triangles out of the egg carton. And then, you can use a piece of the newspaper to make a curly tail.
WARNING: I would suggest gluing the nose over the hole where you removed the balloon, that will hide it.
Step 6: Once you've glued the nose, ears and tail in the right place, you're ready to paint. So for a pig, you'll be needing a lot of PINK paint. This is actually good, because you can teach your kid how to mix colours. For pink you need to mix red and white together. To get a darker shade of pink for the inside of the ears maybe just add a bit of red when you're done with all the pink. Don't forget to make a big mix of the same pink as you need to cover the whole balloon and nose.
Step 7: And now, the final touch. When your pig is ready and dry, you will need a sharp knife to cut a rectangle on top of his back. It will have to be big enough to fit coins in.
A flour balloon face
What you will need:
- 2 balloons (colour matters in this case, so choose two nice colours)
- A funnel
- Black marker
- Double faced tape
- 2 fake plastic eyes (Optional)
There's not much preparation to do for this one, although you might want to work outside or something as it can get messy with the flour.
Method Step 1: This is the less fun part that you might want to do beforehand as it takes a bit of time and the kid might get bored. But anyway, your first step is to fill the balloon with flour. Of course you don't have to fill it all up, just about 2 cups of flour, a bit less. Use the funnel to pour the flour into the balloon. You will notice that at some point you can't put more into the balloon. This is the annoying part. You'll need to tighten the flour into the balloon and pinch it while adding more flour into the top. Then tighten again, and so on. You will need to do that until the balloon is the size you want it to be. I would do it the size of my whole hand.
Step 2: Now hold your balloon with the knot facing upwards. The knot will be part of the hair. Cut a couple of 6cm pieces of wool to create the hair. Tie each piece of wool on the top of the balloon where you tied the knot. You could actually use cotton or anything else to create a different hair style. Just be creative. If you have those 2 eyes, you can also glue them with the double faced tape under the hair where eyes are meant to be.
Step 2: Open the paper and use the paint tubes to place different blobs of different coloured paint right on the fold you just did.
Step 3: Fold it back to how it was in step 1 and use your thumb to press on the paper, spreading the paint everywhere. Spread it as far as you can in any direction until there's no more paint to spread.
Step 4: Open the paper again and surprise. You have an amazing butterfly painting.
Again, use the newspaper to cover your working table. Unfortunately this project does require you to go out and buy a couple of things. But once you've got everything you need it's a pretty easy, quick and messy project. Great for the kids who love animals and nature.
Method Step 1: Spread the peanut butter onto one plate and the bird seeds onto the other.
Step 2: Roll the toilet roll in the peanut butter, make sure there's a lot of peanut butter stuck to it.
Step 3: Now roll that onto the plate of seeds. The seeds should stick to the peanut butter. Make sure that the whole roll is covered.
Step 4: Cut a long piece of string and put it through the roll and finish by tying a knot with both ends.
You can make as many bird feeders as you want and put them all onto a long string. Hang it outside on a tree and wait for the birds to come feed themselves. It's amazing. They love the peanut butter and seed.
Hope these arts and crafts projects got you and especially your child occupied. There's so much to learn and it's fun at the same time.