All posts tagged: Kids

Paper Rainbow Craft

We’re a bit late to the party with our April season tree, since it’s now May.  April usually means April showers, but we decided we needed something more cheerful (not to mention easier to make!), and settled on rainbows. The pictures pretty much speak for themselves, but a quick how-to follows the pictures anyway. If anyone has any bright ideas for our May decorations feel free to share! Take seven sheets of coloured paper and arrange them in rainbow order. Cut into strips of equal width (ours were about 2cm) Trim the strips so that each is around 2cm shorter than the next. Staple the ends. Cover the staples with cotton wool (or white paper) clouds. Hang as a garland, mobile or branch decoration.     Advertisements

Spring sheep decorations

“The thing about doing crafts with small children”, said my sister, “is that it seems like a fun idea, but it almost always ends up being really annoying.” She has a point.  It can be incredibly frustrating, to the point that sometimes the effort, mess and irritation seem to outweigh the potential for enjoyment and prevent you even getting started. But she had got me thinking. What makes for a good arts and crafts session with the under-fives, and how do you mitigate against the inevitable irritations? We certainly haven’t cracked it yet, but I have found a few tricks to make it go more smoothly. Keep it short and quick. Small child = short attention span. If they show signs of getting bored, stop. Pick something they can make from start to finish in less than 15 minutes. They lose interest if they don’t see results. Get everything ready before you suggest the activity.  They want to get started RIGHT NOW and won’t want to sit quietly in front of a tempting pot of glue …

Four easy DIY bird feeders

On January 24 and 25 this year, the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch takes place.  We’ve signed up for the event and this week, in preparation, decided to make some easy DIY bird-feeders. The Big Garden Birdwatch is an annual event.  The aim is to encourage people throughout the UK to spend one hour during the weekend counting all the birds they see in their garden, and submit their results to the Big Birdwatch website. The results are used to monitor the ups and downs of the UK bird population.  Why not join in? You can find out more, or sign up for the event, at the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch website. The DIY bird-feeders below are really easy to make, great for children to get involved in, and, most importantly, provide an important source of food for our garden birds at a time of year when food is scarce and the weather cold. While I’m on the topic and before we launch into the how-tos…  if you have small children who are into nature, you really …

Building a Den

The National Trust has a fabulous initiative called “50 Things to Do Before You’re 11 3/4“, to encourage children to get out and about and explore the great outdoors.  We’ve been wanting to have a go at completing the list and so, with a spare few hours on a sunny Monday, we headed off into the woods and parkland of our local National Trust property – Hughenden Manor – to make a start on ticking off some of the 50 activities. First up on the list for us was No. 28 – Climb a huge hill.  And since Hughenden is in the Chilterns, it didn’t take us too long to find a suitable candidate. Once we had made it to the top, and had a brief snack break, it wasn’t exactly difficult to decide what to attempt next. Yes, it was time for No. 22 – Roll down a really big hill!  After contemplating the descent for a while, Chief Stick Collector decided he was game, and hurtled down with shrieks of delight. Bird Girl, on the other hand, still recovering …

Beach Pebble Game

We were lucky that our week visiting the grandparents at the seaside coincided with an unbroken run of hot sunny weather. Where we weren’t so lucky, however, was that it also coincided with Bird Girl having her arm in plaster, after having taken her epithet perhaps a little too seriously, and fallen from the climbing frame two weeks beforehand. Under strict instructions from the hospital not to let the cast get wet, and suspecting that sand in a plaster cast would not make for a happy two-year-old, we were struggling to find a way for her to enjoy the beach, but did not want her (or Chief Stick Collector) to miss out completely. And then we hit on Pebble Lookalikes. A game that all members of the family can play, and that doesn’t involve getting wet or sandy.  All you need is a bucket, a keen eye and a lively imagination. The rules? Simple – find as many pebbles as you can that resemble something else. Like spotting shapes in the clouds, but with pebbles. Prizes for …