From summer days, to the bazillion school holidays, to sick days, there are so many times when we need to keep our kids busy and entertained. And while the best DIY kids activity may sometimes seem like plopping them in front of the screen and getting ourselves a drink — we do want to bond with our kids and challenge them. Turning to Pinterest for ideas seems like a solid plan until you’re neck-deep in ideas and have no idea which one(s) to pursue. We get it.
To that end, we’ve collected some pretty awesome kids’ DIY activities that will get your kids active and creative, and will also be pretty fun for the parent and caretaker in charge. Plus, for many, you can find the supplies in your recycling bin or in your back yard or local park. Who wants to slap on a face mask and go out for supplies when you can just poke around your junk drawer, right? So, get to DIY’ing, Mama… and have fun!
If there’s one thing that’s better than blowing bubbles, it’s making art using those bubbles! The Chocolate Muffin Tree has a brilliant tutorial on how to create beautiful art by blowing bubbles, using dish soap and tempera paint. It’s seriously too cute. This DIY activity is great for a warm day where you can craft outdoors.
Shadow puppet theater:
We Have Kids brings us this adorable and simple tutorial for how to make your own shadow puppet theatre, using things you can find in your panty — a cereal box, wax paper, some skewers and paper, tape and scissors are all you need. The fun part is that once you’re done making your shadow theater, you get to make up plays to enact in it! It’s the craft that keeps on giving.
We love a nice wearable craft. Draw some masterpieces on sandpaper with your kids and then iron them onto a plain white shirt. Here’s a great tutorial from Shirts.ca:
For the bookworms in your household, these corner bookmarks are both adorable, fun to make, and super useful. Here’s a tutorial from Red Ted Art:
Go out collecting pine cones with your kids and then use them for crafts! Glue googly eyes and feathers and a felt beak to make a cute pinecone bird.
Here are five more pinecone decoration ideas from The Dad Lab that you and your kids will love. We are especially partial to the pinecone spider.
Recycle and Play have an adorable way to make that pinecone into a pine tree (or spruce, or fine, depending on what your Christmas tree is) using a corkscrew.
Toilet paper roll art
Make adorable dolls and figurines by painting toilet paper rolls with tempera paint. Add feathers, googly eyes, fabric, and yarn to embellish the dolls.
You can also use colored paper to decorate your toilet paper roll art:
Or make a darling paper roll crown for the little royal in your life!
You can also make a paper roll car using straws and bottle caps.
Make cute snowflakes with popsicle sticks! Color then with glitter and paint, glue some feathers on them and hang them up around the house or even on your Christmas tree:
Or make this picnic table and chair from 1 Minute Crafts:
Or an adorable painted jewelry box:
Make art with leaves:
This DIY craft combines going outside with making art! Find some of your favorite shaped leaves and make them into fun animals, like a turkey (perfect for Thanksgiving) or a lion (use the leaves for a mane).
Put a sheet of paper on top of live leaves and rub it with a crayon to make a cute leaf stamp! You can then cut out these leaves and make flowers:
For a more advanced, older crafter, you can trace and cut some leaves and make paper wreaths:
Collect some leaves and twigs and make adorable nature art bugs from The Craft Train.
Or make a cute hanging mobile with leaves and a branch, like so:
Glow in the dark jellyfish craft:
There’s nothing better than a glow in the dark craft! These magical jellyfish from Craftiments are made out of paper plates, yarn and decorated with glow in the dark acrylic paints.
Egg cartoon crafts:
Make a beautiful hanging dancing fish from Brainy Beginnings Network:
Or an adorable caterpillar with pipe cleaners:
Or make this name and word recognition game from Herding the Hos for your kid who is just starting to recognize letters:
Make origami frogs that jump, then have a frog race with this tutorial from Itsy Bitsy Fun.
Make little animal and human dolls by painting corkscrews! You can put them use a cardboard box to make a dollhouse for the corkscrews for maximum entertainment.