Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Summer Activities for You and Your Little

Warm weather is right around the corner and after a harsh winter, who wouldn't want some nice outdoor activities to do with your Little?   Here are a few fun, easy crafts that will get you out in the sun!

1.  DIY Paper Kite:  This activity combines arts and crafts with a fun experience of teaching your Little how to fly a kite!

What You’ll Need
  • Two wooden dowels between 1/4″ and 1/8″ in diameter, cut to 33″ and 24″ lengths.
  • 36″ wide sheet of paper (or several smaller sheets taped together to make a large one)
  • Assortment of acrylic paints
  • Twine
  • Tape
  • Ribbons and stencils for decoration

Directions:
First, start by painting the sheet of paper.  The more creative the better, stencils are a fun way to spice up the artwork!

To build the kite frame tie together the two dowels as shown above and then reinforced the joint with hot glue if desired. The perimeter is created by tying a single length of twine from one end of the dowel to the next, for extra stability wrap the twine a few times at each end piece and secure with hot glue.  

Lay the kite frame out on to the painted artwork and trim the paper to size. Leave a 2″ border around the kite frame for folding and finishing the kite.  Lay the kite frame out on to the painted artwork and trim the paper to size.

Find the mid-point of the two sections of the longer dowel and use scissors or a craft knife to cut a small slit in the kite at those locations. You may want to reinforce the holes with a small piece of tape on each side of the kite.

Tie a length of twine to the dowel at the first slit location and feed the string through the slit to the front side of the kite. Feed the string back through the other slit and finish by tying it to the dowel on the backside of the kite. Make sure that the string is NOT pulled tightly on the front side of the kite, but that it has a good amount of slack in it to create the kite’s bridle.  Tie the string that you will use to fly the kite to the center of the bridle, and tie on some ribbons or fabric scraps to create the kite’s tail.  After that you should be ready to fly!

2.  Egg Carton Garden:  Does your Little want to plant flowers but you’re limited on space?  No problem, the egg carton garden is a small space alternative.

What You’ll Need
  • A biodegradable egg carton
  • Dirt
  • Seeds of your choice

Directions:
Step 1
Take a pair of scissors and cut off the top and side flap of egg carton.

Step 2
Fill egg cups with dirt. There are good seed starting varieties of dirt. If you’re growing food, or edible flowers go for an organic dirt.

Step 3
Plant your choice of seed in each egg cup.

Step 4
Water your seeds accordingly.

Step 5
Place the garden in a sunny window and wait.  Make sure your little guys get lots of water and light. Check on them every day to watch them grow. You’ll notice they bend towards the sun. To help them grow tall and straight, rotate the carton from time to time.

Step 6
Now for the fun part! After the last frost, Farmer’s Almanac says April 11, you can transplant your seedlings outdoors. Just cut along the lines of the carton to free each individual egg cup and plant the whole thing, cup and seedling, in the ground. The cup will biodegrade in the dirt and your little seedling will grow into a mighty fine plant.  Neat, huh?

3. Recyclable Wind Chimes:  Have an assortment of tin cans laying around your quiet house?  Create some natural sound with these recyclable wind chimes!
What You’ll Need
  • Recycled tin cans of various sizes
  • Masking tape
  • Craft paint and brushes
  • Glitter
  • Hammer and nail
  • Yarn
  • Washers

Directions:
Let your Little decorate the cans with paint and glitter, again the more creative the more fun the project will be!  Make a hole in the top of the cans with the hammer and nail, this should be done by the Big for safety reasons.  Run a strand of yarn through the hold and tie a washer to the end to hold it in place.  Different sized cans make different noises and different sized washers create different sounds. Invite your kiddos to explore and compare!

For more Summer activities for you and your Little, check out our Pinterest page!