What does an arts and crafts day at home look like for you?
For me and mine crafts usually all for fun (and learning, but shhh don't tell them). It doesn't matter if a certain craft is considered 'girly ' or 'boyish' I just encourage my munchkins to do what they want to do and leave gender out of it.
For some craft work is therapeutic...
I'd like you to meet Jaycob.
Jaycob turns to craft when he is feeling down. He was severely bullied at school which started when he was just 6 years old, making him very depressed to the point he tried to hurt himself. He had a lot of time of school for various reasons but during his time with his mum he learnt to sew amongst other things. Crafts helped him to recover, it gave him something else to focus on and gave him purpose.
Jaycob is now back at school and is a happy young lad again but still likes to get crafty. In the picture above Jaycob is sewing his dad a fathers day cushion which he loved making.
Thank you to Chrissie Lowery for allowing me to share part of your story - it's fantastic to see his energy being channelled into something skillful.
As I mentioned previously I encourage learning when we decide to get crafty (not that the kids realise it) and nine times out of ten it involves getting out paints and brushes, coloured paper, scissors, sticky tape, PVA glue and 'stuff' to stick.
Our craft box often 'stuff' like this...
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Normally speaking craft time at our house is adult-initiated but quickly becomes a child-led activity and I love it this way. I try not to influence them in their craft making decisions but offer them a safe and clean environment in which they can let their imaginations run free. Child-led activities help the children to grow and develop by allowing them to choose the resources they use, promoting independence and decision making skills, to name just two ways in which they learn from craft time. So whilst they are having fun they are learning too. Learning through first-hand experiences, not forced information.
Sometimes I like to shake things up for them and show them a new activity. For example we did potato printing a little while back.
For this activity they decided what shapes they wanted and I cut the potatoes. Here is an example...
We left the craft box in the cupboard for this and got out the paints instead! Woooo paints! Who doesn't love paints? *cue rolling of eyes and anxiety attacks about the mess* This is why I choose to use Crayola as it is washable. I always make sure the children wear aprons but, hey, they are kids and there is usually at least one spillage!
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So there has it two very different takes but both with the same outcome - learning and happiness. Whatever your take is HAVE FUN with it!
Here are a few pictures of past arts and crafts activities from us...
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