We've gotten our Christmas ornaments down from the closet and hung them on the tree. We've festooned the mantel and hung the lights around the house. Now it's time to bring out the craft paper, paint, and glue, and perhaps add a few new handmade treasures to our collections. What fun lies ahead!
Handprint & Footprint Angel
Here is a sweet way to remember the holiday season! Dip the sole of your child's foot into white tempera paint and place it down on a piece of blue paper. The heel should be at the top of the paper and will become the angel's face. Then dip the palms of both your child's hands into the white paint and place them on either side of the footprint, fingers pointing downward. These will be the angel's wings. Use a marker or paint pen to add eyes to the face and a halo on top of the head -- older kids can do this part by themselves. Optional but cute: Cut out the angel figure, laminate it, and place a magnet on the back to display it on the refrigerator.
Materials Needed: Construction paper, tempera paint, markers
Trace your child's hand onto green construction paper or card stock. Cut out 10-12 individual hand shapes, allowing older children to help if they are able to use scissors. Gently fold a paper plate in half and cut out the center, leaving a circular outer ring. Glue the paper handprints around the paper plate rim. Decorate with glitter glue and a red ribbon. Be sure to write the year and the child's age on the back.
Materials Needed: Green paper or card stock, scissors, paper plate, glue, glitter glue, red ribbon, pen
These ornaments are great holiday gifts that children can give. Make the dough ahead of time by combining baking soda and cornstarch in a saucepan. Pour cold water in and cook over medium heat stirring constantly for about 5 minutes, until the mixture thickens. Remove from heat and cover with a wet paper towel until cool. Once cool, get your child involved in the next steps. Knead on a waxed paper covered surface until dough is smooth. Then roll out dough to about 1/6 inch thickness and cut with cookie cutters. You should end up with 2 to 3 dozen ornaments. Make a hole in each ornament for ribbon. Let air dry for 2 days turning ornaments over periodically. Now it's time for your child get creative by painting the ornaments and gluing on sparkles. (Note: The dough is also fun to play with but doesn't keep long.)
Materials Needed: 2 cups baking soda, 1 cup cornstarch, 1 1/4 cup cold water, wax paper, rolling pin, cookie cutters, ribbon for hanging ornaments, and decorating materials such as paint, glue and sparkles
Kind Thoughts Christmas List
This is a simple activity to get your kids' minds off the commercialism of Christmas. Ask each member of your family to think of something that they wish for someone else for Christmas. Place the list on the refrigerator and add to it each night. You'll be surprised at what you can all come up with, and none of them require a trip to the store!
Materials Needed: Paper, pen, kind thoughts
Beaded Christmas Ornaments
This is a fun holiday activity and also promotes hand-eye coordination. Take colored beads (red, green, and white are nice for Christmas), and string onto a pipe cleaner. Bend into desired shape. For specific ideas, try alternating red and white beads and shaping into a candy cane or use green beads, adding a red bead after every four or so and bend into a wreath.
Materials Needed: Pipe cleaners, colored beads
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