The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, and the weather's warming up — it's time to head outside to enjoy some outdoor crafts for kids during spring break. According to PBS, creative experiences help children grow mentally and try new ways of thinking. What better reason is there to venture off on a short hike or explore the backyard to gather some natural materials you and your child can use while you get creative? You can also make a foray into the great outdoors with some craft supplies and ingredients you already have on hand at home. Then, have fun in the sun with these three simple crafts.
Clay Nature Sculptures
Take a trip to the park or local trails to search for unique, textural materials. Let your child gather anything that looks interesting — knobby pinecones, fern fronds, and rough rocks work well for this project. Bring these treasures home, and head outside with some white modeling clay.
Roll the modeling clay into golf ball-sized chunks, and flatten them between two pieces of wax paper. Then, help your child press the natural materials into the clay to make unique imprints. Bake the clay, and paint these textured "rocks," or use them to decorate a kitchen container garden.
Bubbly Hydrangea Paintings
What kids (and adults, for that matter) don't love blowing bubbles? Use them to create frame-worthy art in the springtime sun. For this project, you'll need:
· Acrylic paint in purple, pink, green, and blue
· Non-toxic dish soap
· Plastic drinking straws
· Several small, shallow dishes
To get started, mix up a different paint color in each small, shallow dish. Use one part dish soap, one part acrylic paint, and two parts water in each. Stir to combine. Then, grab your straws and start blowing bubbles in the containers. You want the colorful, frothy bubbles to rise up past the rim of each dish in a dome shape.
Take a piece of cardstock and press it onto one of the bubble "domes." It'll leave behind a colorful, voluminous hydrangea shape. Print several of these flowers onto each sheet of cardstock, and use the green paint to add leaves and vines. Let dry, and display your bright creations somewhere special.
Pretty Ice Pop Chalk
Easy craft ideas for kids are even more fun when they encourage everyone to get outside and start creating. This chilled chalk is great for a warm day of drawing, and it couldn't be easier to whip up.
Gather cornstarch, water, tempera paint, and ice pop molds. Blend up a concoction that's half water, half cornstarch, and a few squirts of tempera paint. Add a different color of the chalk mix to each compartment of the ice pop molds, and stash them in the freezer until they're solid. After that, they're ready to join you and your child on the sidewalk or driveway.
Once spring has sprung, it's time for some fun. These outdoor crafts for kids all offer great opportunities to enjoy the season.