Image © Papery and Cakery
Summertime is all about having your child's friends over for playdates. While kids in pairs or groups are great at figuring out games and activities to play on their own, having a fun craft planned is smart in case there's a lull in the hoopla. The key here is to keep the crafts simple, economical and green. And your kid's buddies will be so thrilled to take home a souvenir of their time spent hanging out at your house.
When choosing crafts to do with my son, I always use recycled and eco-friendly materials whenever possible. It makes craft time easy on the environment and my budget - and I also think that using recycled or found items is a great way for your child to use their imagination. To get started with any of these crafts, you will want to take a look at your recycling bin and craft closet, then read on for my favorite 7 eco-friendly and inexpensive crafts that are perfect fun for boys and girls ages 5-9.
#1: Recycled Milk Jug Catch
If your family is like mine, you have some type of milk or juice jug in your recycling bin right now. While there are tons of great milk jug crafts you can make with your children, my most recent favorite is to turn a couple of milk jugs into a sport that can be played outside, at the park or the beach – a catch game. This project is super simple, a few cuts of the jug with a pair of scissors and a bean bag or ball and you have everything you need for endless fun. The best part, this is a game that children can play together and is fun enough that parents will want to play too.
#2: Recycled Sock Animals
Every household has that drawer with the odd socks without a mate. My son always jokes about how the washer literally eats the socks. Those socks are perfect for making sock animals. Along with a few other craft and sewing supplies, your child can make any type of creature from a sock. It’s a fun activity that my own son has done many times making everything from dogs to caterpillars.
#3: Mini Recycled Glitter Canvases
My son has an unbelievable amount of those small plastic animals in his bedroom. This mini recycled glitter canvas craft is perfect for using those tiny animals. You can use any type of recycled material for the canvas and the rest of the materials you probably already have in your craft closet. This project is great for both boys and girls because the options for colors and animals is endless. Your child could make several of these for a collage piece to hang in their bedroom.
#4: Duct Tape Wallets
This is a great project for children of all ages because you can make the duct tape wallets as simple or complex as you like. While you may think this is a project designed more towards boys, you can design the wallet to be girl friendly too. You can customize the wallets with an array of colors, sizes and designs. This is also a project that takes a little more time so it is perfect for long rainy afternoons inside.
#5: Paper Roll + Cupcake Liner Owls
Children of all ages love owls – who doesn’t? This simple owl craft is fun to make using empty paper rolls, cupcake liners and other supplies from your craft closet. They can be customized using different colors and patterns and this is a sweet craft for all children to make. Wouldn’t a whole set of these little owls look adorable lined up on your kitchen countertop?
#6: Rock Pets
When I was little my grandma gave me a pet rock as a gift. I remember being completely smitten with the pet rock – and soon a pet rock collection followed. Once a rock is painted, given features and a little box to live in, it becomes much more than a rock. This project is perfect for children of all ages, your child can paint it to look like any animal they would like. It is fun to make several for a collection or to give to your friends and family as gifts.
#7: Recycled Origami
Have your children read Origami Yoda? If not, it is a read they will enjoy and I guarantee they will want to create with Origami when they finish the book. You can start making Origami that is much simpler, especially for younger children. Using recycled paper and a few simple folds, your child will enjoy building with paper and being creative at the same time.