This Halloween craft was unplanned but when I asked the kids what they wanted to make they both said something to decorate for Halloween. So we gathered up some recycled materials and this is what we made! Both my kids really got into this and as simple as this recycled craft is there are lots of little bits that are really great skill builders. Drawing on the plastic required that they use very steady hands, threading the beads and knotting the thread required good fine motor skills and eye hand coordination. I just love that in the 36 hours since we made these my son has asked me 4 times if I think the Trick- or-Treaters will like his because he thinks they will. He’s proud of it and should be.
Gather your materials. You will need a recycled plastic container. We used puffs containers but anything cylindrical that you can punch a hole through will work. You will also need some string, permanent markers so the ink stays on the plastic, some beads ( we used applesauce pouch tops as beads too), scissors, something to poke holes with ( I used a screwdriver) and orange and black plastic creepy crawlies.
Start by making holes in the container in the middle of the top ( really bottom) and 3-4 an inch or so from the bottom.
Have your child start by drawing your monster or ghost on the container. My son included some writing on his making his ghost say “Boo!” while my daughter just didn’t stop – she must have drawn on it very carefully for ten minutes straight. No wrong way to do it. Tip: If you get permanent marker on some surfaces you can use dry erase marker to remove it. It works on my IKEA table every time! Let the marker dry for a few minutes.
Time to thread the string through the bottom holes and knot. My son did his and I did it for my daughter. This is great knot practice for kids working on perfecting tying their shoes. My son had three strings to add beads and plastic creepy crawlies on to and my daughter had two. Making the same craft with different ages is easier if you make little accommodations like this to avoid too much frustration but still including all your kids.
Next I put a thread through the hole in the top, tied a lid on as a stopper on the inside and made a loop on the outside as a hook to hang it up. This just makes sure that the thread doesn’t pop through the hole and the wind chime.
One little ghost went out to play upon a spider’s web one day
He had such enormous fun that he called for another little ghost to come.
Two little ghosts went out to play upon a spider’s web one day
They had such enormous fun that they called for another little ghost to come.
and so on and so on…
In my class I used to sing this starting at one side of the circle time rug calling each child over. My assistant teacher would be last. The children loved it so much I would do it for every theme from dinosaurs to Christmas elves!
Christmas adds up quickly! Even when you are focusing on making it about people and not things the bills have a way of adding up. One way to keep cost down and your green meter up is to create Christmas crafts, decorations and ornaments from recycled materials. All of these crafts and activities use some recycled materials. Not only does it send your kids the message to reduce, reuse and recycle it also encourages them to think creatively. ” What can I make from this?” is something I hear at my house all the time ( and not just when I am talking to myself) and I hope that goes on for years and years.
Bubble Wrap Christmas Tree
Cardboard Noel Garland
Shampoo Bottle Wise Men
Recycled Christmas Bows
Gift Wrap Scrap Patterns
Cork Painted Wreath
Recycled Puzzle Piece Ornaments
Scrap Paper Stocking
Advent Calendar from Baby Wipes Container Lids
Recycled Photo Card Ornaments
Magazine Collage Christmas Tree
Wrapping Paper Scrap Sorting
Yogurt Lid Ornaments
We’ve been having fun with recycled materials and a few days ago when I heard my son say ” I’m bored!” I replied with ” Want to throw some eggs off the porch? ” He’s 5 so of course he said yes! I told him there was one rule we had to make a escape pod and try to protect the egg from cracking.
- Gather your materials. We rummaged through our recycle bin, my art closet and playroom. This is what we decided we might use. Immediately there was talk of a parachute. When I found a treat box it was quickly tagged as a possible parachute. We also used bubble wrap, an egg carton, some tape, cotton balls, party streamers and yarn. Use what you have that’s the whole idea, to use what you have to make something useful to protect the egg .
- First he lined the carton ( that we cut in half) with cotton balls and bubble wrap and added strips of party streamers.
- Then we poked holes in the treat box to make a parachute and threaded yarn through.
- Tied it on to the carton.
- Added the egg. Closed it up and used a little tape too.
- Then we trekked out to the porch and …. wait wait first we made predictions. My son predicted it would be OK. I thought it would be smashed. Then he dropped it .
- It didn’t crack!
- ” Let’s do it ’til it cracks!” OK!
- 2nd time it hit the flower box … as soon as it did my son said ” I bet that made it crack!”
- He was right. I asked him to explain why it would make it crack but the ground wouldn’t. He explained it simply but logically. ” The parachute didn’t have time to help yet and it hit hard.”
This wasn’t a planned activity but it was a blast. It would be so fun in a class to keep throwing them until only one survives!