In my book Summertime Sanity for You & the Kids(A variety of activities for preschoolers thru elementary) I have a section on paper which lists some recommended paper to purchase as well as craft activities to make using paper.
Try and have a variety of paper on hand. Some of the types of paper I like to have available are butcher paper, card stock, construction paper, copier paper, and tissue paper. You don’t need to get this all at once but it is nice to build up your stock.
One thing I like to have is a roll of butcher paper. You can purchase it at Sam’s Club for about $20.00. It can go a long way and you can do a variety of things with it.
You can do body tracing(outline your child’s body) then they color and decorate it; you can hang it on a fence and your child can spray paint it(using plastic spray bottles – make your own), or your child can decorate it for a tablecloth. Check out my book for additional ideas.
What do you like to do with butcher paper?
A few weeks ago I was watching some of my grandchildren. I planned to let them paint, so I set up the table with an old tablecloth, put some paint on small paper plates, and gave them paint brushes, and some q-tips to paint with. They have done this before so I let them go at it. I had paper nearby if they wanted to make more.
C & K painting with brushes and q-tips.
I let them paint whatever they wanted to. After a while, my oldest grandson K, decided to do something else with the q-tips. He took several of them and put a rubber band around them and used it to paint. He called it the triple fluffer roo. He had fun painting in a different way.
K with his triple fluffer roo painting tool.
What creative things does your child like to do when they paint?
I recently came back from a four day California coastal cruise with my husband, son, daughter-in-law, their two children(ages 3 and 18 months), and her parents. We were flying to the cruise port and I wanted to make something for my eighteen month old grandson to play with on the plane, and also while we were on the cruise ship.
I went to our local Dollar Tree to see what I could make. I came across two small clear plastic containers with lids that can pop up. These were small enough that we could pack it in the carry on bag. While I was at the Dollar Tree I was looking to see what he could put in it that wasn’t too small.
I came across some plastic fruit that is used to freeze and put in drinks. This was a great size and it fit in the conatainer. I also had some other things at home that he could drop in it – plastic bottle lids and the colorful plastic lids from fruit pouches. I brought five of each and put them in ziploc bags. I also put a piece of felt in the bottom of one of the containers so it won’t be too loud when he drops things in it. Normally I wouldn’t mind it being loud, but since we were on an airplane I wanted to be considerate of others.
In the other conatainer, I put some colorful and silky material in it, that he can pull out. He liked that but I think he had more fun with the container that he could dump out and fill again. His three year old sister liked playing with it also.
Plastic jars and fruit from the Dollar Tree.
DIY Toddler Toy
E dumping plastic fruit.
E putting plastic fruit in container.
A few weeks ago I was watching some of my grandchildren – ages 7, 6, and 21 months old. I was trying to think of something to make/do with the toddler. She loves balls and I had some paper towel tubes, so I taped one to the wall. I showed her how to drop the ball in the tube.
She had fun for a little while and then she was done. Her older brothers wanted to know if I had more paper towel tubes because they wanted to add to it. I gave them some more paper towel tubes, tape, and scissors. They were busy for a little bit constructing a marble tower with what they had. They were trying different ways to see which would work better and also cut one of the tubes to make it fit.
They were busy playing, and constructing for over an hour. This activity didn’t cost anything since it was with things I had around the house.
What do you have around your house that your child can create something with?