As a first time mom to a 2-year old toddler, I am always on the lookout for developmentally appropriate activities for my kid. Hubby and I keep in mind that all children have their own timelines and we make sure we only do activities Andre is interested in (read: no pressure!). So why try doing arts and crafts with your kid?
The benefits of crafting with your child.
- Extend their thinking across multiple patterns of intelligence
- Develop higher thinking skills
- Enhance multicultural understandings
- Build self esteem
- Gain positive emotional responses to learning
- Engage through a variety of learning styles
A trip to the bookstore is something that always excites Andre, and coloring books, paper, washable crayons, and watercolor are staples in the house.
Arts and Crafts Tips
- Use blank sheets (sketch pads, cartolina, and the clean side of scratch bond paper as an environment-friendly option). Studies show that very young kids learn more from drawing on blank sheets, rather than coloring within lines and figures. This helps build their imagination and creativity, which would make for well-adjusted, secure, and happy adults.
- Use big and washable crayons to avoid permanent damage on your furniture and sheets. Big crayons are easier to grip by tiny toddler hands.
- Don’t worry about the mess. Use old newspaper, towels, or any protective layer over your table or floor, but allow your child to explore, even if s/he makes a mess.
Try decoupage crafts.
One of our wonderful finds from Amanda Griffin-Jacob’s and Bianca Araneta-Elizalde’s Project Mom fair and Mother’s Day celebration is La Pomme Homme‘s fabric decoupage kits and many other craft kits for kids. Wikipedia defines decoupage as “the art of decorating an object by gluing colored paper cutouts onto it”. La Pomme Homme’s decoupage kits come in cute animal shapes and colorful strips of fabric.
The kit’s instructions say dip the fabric on water and glue, but I wanted to try using a paint brush and glue-water dip.