Toddler craft ideas
By Ann Douglas
Toddlers love to try new things,
especially when it involves paint and glue!
Columnist Ann Douglas shares some fun activity
ideas perfect for toddlers.
My three-year-old is just
starting to show an interest in arts and crafts
and I'm eager to encourage his creativity.
Do you have any suggestions for activities
that we could enjoy together?
Ann Douglas answers:
Here are some terrific toddler-friendly
Help your toddler drizzle
some glue on a sheet of construction paper. He
can then sprinkle sand, cornmeal or birdseed on
top of the glue to make a picture.
Gather up textured objects
like leaves and use them to make rubbings with
crayons. (Place the leaf underneath the sheet
of paper and rub the crayon on top of the sheet
of paper. You should end up with an imprint of
the shape of the leaf.)
Unroll a sheet of clear
adhesive paper and place it sticky side up. Then
give your toddler a variety of art materials to
stick on the paper. Apply a second sheet of clear
adhesive paper or a piece of construction paper
and -- voila! -- you'll have some instant artwork.
Trace your toddler's
hand and feet on a sheet of paper or let him make
handprints and footprints with paint.
Let your toddler fingerpaint
on a window or mirror or in the bottom of the
bathroom sink. If he's not into getting his fingers
dirty, he can use a paintbrush instead.
Attach bubble wrap to
a paint roller. Your toddler will enjoy observing
how the bubble wrap affects the design he's able
to produce with the paint roller.
Give your toddler a
bunch of fun alternatives to paintbrushes: sponges,
feathers, old toothbrushes, combs, Q-tips, a potato
masher, apple slices cut into shapes, and so on.
Pop the ball out of
an empty roll-on deodorant bottle and fill the
bottle with liquid tempera paint. Snap the ball
back into place and -- voilà -- your child
will have a fun roll-on art tool. Just make sure
to keep the bottle away from the bathroom or you
could end up starting your day with neon-green
Make pasta necklaces
using large pasta. You can paint the pasta first
using tempera paints or combine food coloring
with a little water to dye the pasta instead.
(Simply dip the pasta in the colored water for
about 10 seconds and then allow it to dry overnight.
Note: Be sure to wear plastic or rubber gloves
as this may stain your fingers.)
Roll a cob of corn in
a shallow dish containing a thin layer of paint
and then roll it along a piece of paper.
Dip a plastic strawberry
basket in a shallow dish containing a thin layer
of paint and then press it on a sheet of paper.
Hint: A Frisbee or a tin pie plate tends to work
Place a blob of paint
in the centre of a large sheet of paper. Drive
a toy car through the puddle and watch how the
wheels leave tracks on the page.
Place a piece of paper
in the bottom of a square cookie tin. Dribble
a bit of paint on the sheet of paper and add a
ping-pong or golf ball. Put the lid on tightly
and show your toddler how to shake the container
vigorously. The ball will end up "painting"
Ann Douglas is an award-winning
writer and the authorof 28 books, including
her new books ‘Sleep Solutionsfor Your
Baby’, ‘Toddler and Preschooler
and Mealtime Solutions for Your Baby, Toddler
and Preschooler’. You can find book
excerpts, articles, tip sheets and more by
visiting Ann's website at www.having-a-baby.com
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