Monday, November 29, 2010

Handprint Turkey

Paper Plate
Felt - cut into 1 inch x 1 inch squares (fall colors)
Paint - (used washable poster paint) Brown, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green
Paint Brushes
Googly Eye
School Glue or craft glue
Hole Puncher & Yarn

  • Paint child's hand. Paint thumb and palm brown. Paint each finger a different color.
  • Make handprint on plate. (wash their hand)
  • Put line of glue around edge of plate. 
  • Place felt on glue to create "frame"
  • Add turkey features - such as legs and beak and googly eye
  • Hole punch and hang with yarn

This project is a slight variation to project found here.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mud Dough

Pre-School Crafts

This is a preschool idea for a play dough called Mud Dough.
It is best to do this at a large work table so that all the children can watch and help to stir the dough. They will also get a chance to knead the dough—always a hit with this age group. You will need ½ cup of cold water, 1 tablespoon cooking oil, 2 tablespoons brown tempera paint, ½ cup of salt, 1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1 ½ cups of white flour. You can decide how much of the measuring and pouring can be done by your kids depending on their abilities. Put all of the ingredients in a large bowl to stir together and then turn it out onto the table to knead until it is totally mixed. This really resembles mud and the children enjoy using their Mud Dough to make shapes. Tell them they can make animal shapes, like the ones they might find in a zoo. It always helps to have cookie cutters available to help with this especially for the younger children.

Tissue Paper Sculpture

Have the children tear tissue paper into small pieces. Size and shape don’t matter so this is perfect for this age. In a small bowl mix equal parts of glue and water. Show them how to crumple the paper into wads, and then dip these wads of colorful paper into the glue and stick it onto a piece of cardstock or cardboard. They can create their own sculpture!

Homemade Decoupage Paste

If you're in need of some decoupage paste but don't have any on hand and don't have time to get some, try this simple homemade recipe.

-Elmer's Glue or Tacky Glue
-container (with lid if wanting to store)
-stir stick

Mix equal parts of glue and water in your container. Stir until uniform or until you have a milky consistency. Mixture should be paintable but not to thick.

To apply  your decoupage paste, paint a thin layer on the object to be decoupaged and lay your image on top. Smooth out any air bubbles and then paint a thin layer over the image. Layer images for best results.

A sponge-tip craft brush is great for decoupage because it leaves no brush lines or bristles behind.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tissue Paper Turkeys

Jack's 2 feather turkey. He wasn't so interested in making the feathers as he was in gluing.

Micah, Jack and Hailey with their turkeys. As you can see these are cute with 2, 3 or even 5 feathers.
-fall colored tissue paper
-construction paper (brown, white, black, yellow, red)
-contact paper
-paper plate
-crayons or paint
-glue stick
-duct tape

1. Cut out parts. Feathers, eyes, beak, hangy red thing, feet, turkey head, paper plate in half and tissue paper squares.
2. Unroll some contact paper and peel back the non-stick side. Place feather outlines on sticky side and recover with non-sticky paper. Cut out around feather leaving a decent sized border to be trimmed later.
3. Assemble feathers: Peel backing from contact paper. With sticky side up place tissue paper squares inside the feather outline. Once finished unroll contact paper again. Peel back the sticky side. Place the decorated feather, sticky side up on the backing. Cover with the sticky paper that you had just unrolled. Trim around edge of feather.
4. Assemble turkey: Either color or paint the paper plate. My goal was to have a brown plate, but the kids had other ideas. Glue the face and feet onto the turkey head and glue the turkey head onto the paper plate. Turn plate over and using duct tape, tape the feathers to the back of the plate. I also used little tape rolls between the feathers and the plate to keep them from falling back too far.

Tissue paper crafts like these can be used for a lot of different things. Just cut an outline and fill it in. 

Thanksgiving Paper Bag Puppets

This idea was inspired by There were no specific instructions on that site, but it is fairly self-explanatory.

Here are my own "directions" for how we made these puppets:

Supplies needed:

Paper bags
Construction paper
Feathers (I happen to have a supply of actual feathers on hand, but if I didn't, I would just make some out of paper.)
Scissors (for prep work)



-make the pieces for each puppet. For each one, the face, hair, and the components of their hats & of their belts were all separate items that Caleb would later glue on. This was my own craft activity last night. =)

**If you would prefer to use a template for the faces, there are some available at If you follow that link, you can also see examples of their Thanksgiving puppets.


Work with your child to put together the puppets. Caleb is pretty good with glue, but depending on the age of your child, you might need to place the glue in the correct spot and have him/her stick each piece on. I try as much as possible to allow Caleb to do most of the work. Even if a hat is crooked, there seems to be too many feathers, or there is glue in places there shouldn't be, my goal is for him to do it. Even if it doesn't look "perfect"!

**You can always add other clothing parts, shoes, arms, etc. if you like. I thought that using an actual ribbon for the feather headpiece would look nice, but I didn't have any ribbon on hand that seemed to work.


Whenever I do projects with him, I do my best to use them as "teaching moments". So today, we talked about the 1st Thanksgiving and who the Pilgrims and Indians were. We "played" with the puppets and used that time to touch on topics such as what was eaten at the 1st Thanksgiving.

I am not confident that these puppets will last very long, as they are only paper, but so far he has enjoyed playing with them, and they are a nice visual reference of the folks who shared that first Thanksgiving meal!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Wave Ware Picnic Plates

-2 paper plates per animal (either colored or paint them yourself)
-black construction paper
-glue or double-sided tape

A picnic at the beach deserves the proper dishes -- what could be more fitting than colorful plates posing as a lobster, sun, and seagull? Kids can just cut parts from another plate and affix with double-sided tape. 

Use our templates for the wings and claws. For the beak and sun's rays, cut out triangles. Punch holes from black construction paper for the eyes; then affix with white glue.


Cool Kazoos

To make this wind instrument, have kids punch a hole near one end of a paper-towel tube. Cover that end with waxed paper, and secure with a rubber band. Hum tunes into the open end.



Foil-and-Paper Crowns

-aluminum foil
-20" wide tissue paper
-tape or glue

Crowns How-To
1. Tear off aluminum foil 20 inches long. Fold in half twice, long sides together, or cuff; lay cuff with opening toward top.
Fold 20-inch-wide tissue paper in half lengthwise twice; lay inside V of the cuff, folded edge up, so bottom edge is just below center of cuff.
2. Fold foil strip in half again, folding up from the bottom (this will hold the tissue in place).
3. Cut flat-topped points in tissue paper, leaving attached at the fold, and decorate with stickers.
4. Overlap ends to proper size, and slip one end of foil inside the other. Tape or glue together.
From Martha Stewart Kids, Special Issue 2004

Glittered Pumpkins

Kids can help bring a sparkle to the house with these glittered pumpkins that will last for months.

With a medium-size paintbrush, spread a layer of white glue over the surface of a small pumpkin. Hold the pumpkin over a paper plate or a sheet of newspaper to catch excess glitter. Sprinkle powdery glitter over pumpkin in several colors (we used penny, persimmon, orange, and pink champagne), covering completely. Let dry for about an hour; shake off excess glitter. Coat stem with brown acrylic paint; let dry.


Card Garland

Card Garland

Give old cards more hang time by making a garland of disks cut from them.
Use craft punches (or trace a round object and cut out). Attach to heavy thread with glue; rub with craft stick to secure.

Could do with hearts for Valentine day garland.


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Shape Christmas Tree

christmas tree craft supplies
shape christmas tree preschool craft  
What you'll need:
How to make your Shape Christmas Tree
  1. Print our template and cut the pieces out. The triangles (tree parts) should be green, the star should be yellow, the rectangle should be brown and the circles should be all different colors.
  2. Glue the triangles to a full sheet of construction paper. Start with the largest one and work your way up to the smallest triangle on the top of the tree.
  3. Glue the rectangle (trunk) to the bottom of the tree.
  4. Glue the ornaments onto the tree and then glue the star on top.

Cotton Ball Santa

What you'll need:
  • Small paper plate
  • Craft paint: flesh tone
  • Red craft foam
  • Cotton balls
  • 2 googly eyes
  • 1 pink pom pom
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Paint Brush
  • Red marker or crayon
How to make your Cotton Ball Santa Craft
  • Turn the paper plate upside down and paint it in the flesh tone of your choice.  Set the plate aside to dry.
  • Cut a hat shape out of red craft foam and glue a cotton ball to the tip of the hat and then glue a line of cotton balls along the bottom of the hat.
  • Once the paper plate is dry, glue the bottom of the hat to the top of the paper plate.
  • Glue a "beard" of cotton balls along the outside edge of the paper plate. 
  • Glue two googly eyes onto the plate near the hat.
  • Glue a pink pom pom under the eyes as a nose. 
  • Cut a cotton ball in half and glue above the eyes as eyebrows.
  • Cut a cotton ball in half and pull it slightly to form a mustache.  Glue under the nose.
  • Use the red marker to draw a smile under the mustache.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Plastic Cup Pilgrim Hats

-black plastic cups
(or use little dixie cups and paint them black)
-heavy paper (black and yellow, white if you want a band)
-pen to write on black paper

Here is how I envision creating these cute and simple place cards. Cut black circles out to match proportionately with your cups. Cut out a yellow buckle. But some glue on a paper plate and dip the cup into the glue. Or use the glue bottle and carefully follow the rim of the cup. Place the cup on top of the black circle. Put a little glue on the buckle. A smaller child could do this using a Q-Tip perhaps. Place the buckle on the cup. Write the name with your special pen.

Directions Written By: Natalie

Easy Painting Techniques

Shaving Cream Painting: Leave white or add a few drops of food coloring. Let your child use his hands to “paint” on a heavy sheet of paper (watch his mouth!) The shaving cream will dry and make a very interesting art project. 

Glue Painting: Put white school glue in a bowl or paper plate. Allow your toddler to “paint” it on a piece of paper (use a paint brush or Q-tip.) Sprinkle with glitter, colored sand, or cotton balls and let dry. 

Water Painting: This toddler craft is SO EASY! Provide your toddler with a small glass of water, light colored construction paper, and a paint brush. The paper will get darker where she “paints” the water. 

Painting- Without the Mess!
Great activity for your toddler when you need 15 minutes to make dinner!
  • Large plastic Ziploc bag
  • Tempura paint (or search for the homemade “paint” recipe perfect for this toddler craft)
  • Duct tape
  1. Make (or buy) paint
  2. Place in plastic bag (put more than one color in to teach your toddler about mixing colors)
  3. Close bag and tape shut to make sure it doesn’t open
    With your Toddler:
  1. Let your toddler squish, mush, and mix the paint in the bag
  2. Point out when the colors mix and make a new one

    Sticker Pages and Shapes

    • Paper
    • Assorted stickers
    1. Peel the sticky background off the sheet of stickers (doing this makes it easier for your toddler to peel the stickers by herself)
    2. Cut out desired shape from paper
        With your Toddler:
    1. Place the paper and stickers in front of your child
    2. Let him or her place the stickers on the paper however she wants
    This can be done with almost any age group and can be adapted for any season.


    Yarn Ball Turkey

    What a TurkeySupplies
    -9" polystyrene ball
    -dark brown yarn
    -light brown yarn
    -wooden craft stick or wooden skewers
    -felt (white, yellow, red)
    -black pom-poms
    -construction paper

    What a Turkey
    Ask each child to write what she's thankful for on a paper feather, then stick it into this cute turkey centerpiece. 

    How to make it: Cut a 1-inch sliver off the bottom of a 9-inch polystyrene ball. Wrap sphere neatly in thick dark-brown yarn, covering surface completely; knot on bottom. Make a 4-inch ball from light-brown yarn and attach to body with a wooden craft stick. Create simple facial features using felt: white circles (approximately the size of a quarter, with 1/8-inch pom-poms for pupils) for eyes, yellow triangles for the beak, and long red felt teardrops as the wattle. Cut feather shapes from colored craft paper and bend in half lengthwise to create seam. Glue wooden craft stick to the bottom third of the feather and insert in a fan shape on turkey body.

    This project could be made easy for the littlest kids by pre-making several parts and letting the child simply decorate the feathers any way he/she wants. i.e. coloring, stickers, painting, glitter... Or this project could be for an older child who has the skills to write, wrap yarn, cut and glue.


    A Feather in Your Cap

    A Feather in Your Cap

    -colored duct tape or heavy construction paper
    -colored feathers or homemade construction paper feathers

    For a fun Thanksgiving hat, lay out a strip of fall-colored (not silver) duct tape, adhesive side up. Place feathers on the strip and then cover with another strip of tape. Cut to fit around the child's head and tape together.


    Candy Corn on the Cob

    Candy Corn on the Cob
    Supplies:-candy corn-craft foam (orange, yellow, brown)-scissors-glue-hole punch-ribbon (green)
    While reading stories about that first Thanksgiving, kids can make the very food that had a starring role: corn! Cut the corncob shapes out of orange, yellow, and brown craft foam. Glue candy corn all over the fronts. Punch two holes in the top of each ear for a big green ribbon hanger. Make three to hang together on a door or on the back of each dining room chair.

    Why This Blog

    I always say I want to do more structured things with Jack. Different crafts or activities to enrich his creativity, imagination and learning. But when we have time for these things I'm totally unprepared and have no ideas of what to do. So I recently began searching the Internet trying to find good ideas. As I ran across things that seemed fun or interesting I would email the link to myself. After many such emails I wondered if I could come up with a better way to remember and organize these ideas so they'd be ready when I needed them. I know there are a ton of blogs out there with crafting ideas for kids, but I like to do my own thing sometimes and like a recipe book I feel these blogs have a few things I really like and a lot of things I'm not interested in. So I started this blog. I'll post whatever ideas I come across that I think would be fun to do today, tomorrow or someday. It might be a craft or it might be an activity. I might even venture into great places to go, who knows.

    Name That Blog

    I wanted to start this blog but I couldn't think of a good name. Finally, I settled on Idea Emergency. As I was searching for a cute background I found the owls. I thought they were perfect but then I didn't like the blog name with them. So I searched for owl crafts to see if anything inspired a new name relating to the cute owls. That's when I found origami owls. I like the sound of it, the flow of the alliteration and that it was kinda cute. So I changed the blog name to Origami Owls-And Other Crafty Things. I don't think I'll be changing again, unless I can't remember how to spell Origami.