Part of the fun of Christmas is making, exploring and enjoying Christmas craft, so here are a few ideas for your babies, toddlers and young children - just adapt the activities to suit your little one and have fun!
Christmas boxes, I know how much your children LOVE to touch all the sparkly decorations AND how long it took you to get them ‘just perfect’! So instead of saying ‘no, no no!”, ‘don’t touch’ or spending hours re-doing them every night, why not give your child a Christmas box? Simply fill a shoe box or a large cloth bag, (any container will do!) with the decorations you don’t want any more, decorations donated from a friend or cheap ones bought from a bargain shop. Just make sure they aren’t dangerous, can’t be choked upon etc and let your little one feel the textures, enjoy the sparkly colours, see and touch the glittery baubles, the soft Father Christmas or sparkly beads, maybe you could even buy a little cheap tree for them to decorate! Add to your Christmas box wrapping paper, bows and ribbon to feel and crinkle and of course to wrap ‘presents up’ too (anything will do!), and of course Christmas cards to write on!
Salt dough, to make snowman ornaments or baby hand prints to sprinkle with glitter and varnish, just remember to add a hole before you bake them so they can hang on your tree. (Salt dough; 2 cups plain flour, one cup of salt, add water and mix to make a dough. If it’s too sticky just add more flour. Bake in the oven on the lowest setting till hard. Then paint, add sequins or glitter and varnish with PVA).
Shake & Snow, wash an old jar and it’s lid and allow to dry. Stick a Christmas ornament to the lid (do use superglue so it doesn’t fall off), pour glitter, sequins or pretend snow (or maybe all three!) into the jar. Fill about 3/4 way with water, add approximately two tablespoons of glycerin and stir. Put on the lid and shake - fabulous! (The glycerin stops the glitter from falling too fast and costs just under £1.00 from supermarkets).
Christmas cards, who doesn’t like a home made card! Here are a few suggestions; For baby - paint their feet, print onto card and write mistletoes! For toddlers - paint their hand white and print onto card (this will be the face and beard) stick on a Christmas hat, add two black finger print eyes and a smile of course!. For older children paint their hand brown, cut it out and stick onto card, add google eyes, have the finger part pointing downwards as the legs and the thumb as the face, draw on antlers and a red nose and decorate Rudolph with sparkles!
Christmas cutting, children love to look at pictures of toys they’d like, younger children love to cut and toddlers love to glue and stick. So pick up a toy catalogue next time you are out and let them, or help them to make a Christmas stocking picture of what they might like! Great for practising cutting and fine motor skills, may also give you a few ideas too! Quick tip, plastic scissors are awful to learn to cut with so do buy a normal pair BUT do watch your little one with the scissors as you don’t want your child to have a ‘home done’ hair cut at Christmas!
Christmas tree, easy, easy easy - simply cut out a Christmas tree shape, let your child decorate it however they want (it is their tree!), stick the back of it onto a toilet roll and there you have it a stand up tree!
Christmas biscuits, mmmm. Make simple biscuits and use a cutter to turn them into snowmen, decorate with icing, smarties and sweet laces for a smile, then deliver to your parent and toddler group or nursery class. (200g butter, 200g caster sugar, 1 large egg, 400 g plain flour - beat the butter till soft and creamy, add sugar, egg and flour to make a dough. Knead, then roll out and cut out your shapes. Place on greaseproof paper and into the oven, 200C/180C fan/gas 6, for ten minutes, leave to cool then decorate).
Just remember these activities are meant to be fun, so don’t take over, let your child do it - not you, if you want you can make one too !
Written by, on Facebook, Me & You @meandyoubyjenni to support the Greater Shantallow Talking To Our Babies, Greater Shantallow Area Partnership. Tel; 028 71358787 / Facebook; Talking To Our Babies / www.shantallow.net
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