Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat.
Yes it really is less than 10 weeks until Christmas is here and the kids will be off school.
As the days get darker, earlier, and the cold discourages kids from venturing outside I find that keeping them busy and occupied at this time of year is easy with festive arts and craft.
Since the purse strings are getting ever so tighter, Christmas crafts are great way to entertain the kids on a budget whilst creating some wonderful homemade gifts for teachers, family and friends.
If you’re looking for a little inspiration, here are my ideas:
- Nativity Scenes – this time of year is about the birth of Christ, although some may think it’s about presents, and a great way to educate young children about the first Christmas is through Nativity scenes. You can buy wooden nativity sets that the children can paint and display at home or in school; or you can retell the story with Nativity finger puppets. You can even create costumes and bring friends together to create their own Nativity.
- Handmade Christmas Cards – when a friend or family member opens the envelope and sees a card made just for them, with tender loving care it shows they were thought fondly of. There really are lots of options available including pre-cut cards of snowmen, Christmas crackers, stars and Santa’s to get you started. All you need then is some card of differing colours, glitter, collage materials and glue. To add an extra touch of Christmas spirit why not let them write the festive messages with metallic pens.
- Felt Christmas Characters – let your kids create colourful and tactile decorations that can be wall mounted or hung on display. Simply supply some felt Christmas shaped characters, some ribbons, pom poms and glitter glue and watch Rudolph, Santa and friends come to life.
- Snow globes – a childhood favourite, and so easy to make. Simply take some snow domes, readily available on the high street or online nowadays, and slide in their glorious pieces of art, these can be festive scenes or messages, or even Christmas characters. These crafty ideas provide entertainment even after they are finished as they sit, shake and watch the snow fall.
- Christmas Decorations – you don’t have to restrict the kids to artwork for the walls, encourage them to create their own ornaments. The latest craze is for 3D baubles, inside the kids can sprinkle these with coloured rice or sand or glitter; and fill them with pom poms, shells, tissue or feathers to create unique, dazzling ornaments to adorn any Christmas tree.
- Candle lanterns – let them create a warm feeling with their own candle lanterns. You can give your kids free reign to decorate the cardboard lanterns with glitter and sequins, gems, ribbons and more. (They come complete with pre-cut card candles so no need to worry about the real thing) and then you can step-in to help the young ones construct them and create holes to hang them around your grotto.
- Picture frames – once they’ve finished garnishing your home and school with their wares, why not persuade them to decorate wooden trinket boxes or photo frames which can be filled with their favourite pictures and placed under the tree as surprise presents for their nearest and dearest.
You can buy all these Christmas crafts now to encourage your kids to celebrate the festive season in a wonderful creative atmosphere as they become more and more excited about the big day.
Just remember to cover your dining table in a protective table cloth and give the kids some aprons. Take it from me, it’s a lesson learnt!
Article by Carlo Rossi
Carlo Rossi is a DIY geek and writes at Hope Education art and craft supplies covering everything from painting and modelling dough to glitter and sequins. He is collaborating with his local community centre for a Christmas decoration project that is involving around 50 kids in the South London area.