Friday, July 22, 2016

Five on Friday - Crafting with Kids

Vacation Bible School (VBS) - 3 days last week and Jacky's 4-H Craft Camp - 4 days this week - that's what I have been doing.

Our daughter, Justine, took charge of our VBS again this year.  It was the "Ultimate Survivor" I helped with crafts.  We made the following:

1.  Para cord bracelet (some tears - confusing for kids/adults)
2.  Decorated a clay pot and planted an edible (chives) plant
3.  Recycled water bottle first aide/survivor kit.   

For Jacky's 4-H Craft Camp 2016 (4th year) we did the following:  

1.  Planted Fairy Gardens (the most popular one)
2.  Cement hands (all the fingers broke off...)
3.  Paper Mache' bowls (messy but fun)
4.  Rustic wood birdhouse (thanks Leon for wood)






I mentioned all that to get to my "Five on Friday" post.

Five things to keep in mind when crafting with kids:

1.  Find age appropriate crafts.  I am usually working with a variety of ages in the same group.  Therefore, I do an easy project one day and a more challenging one the next.  This keeps all involved.  Yes, there were tears with the para cord bracelet, but most finished it.  They didn't look perfect, but they made it themselves and that's what is important.

2.  Listen to their ideas.  I have to say, one of my little 4-Hrs had some good ideas with the paper mache' bowls.  She was putting her strips on a different way that I was - hers was a much better idea.  Kids view things with an open mind and simple plan - this can help you, so ask for their ideas.

3.  Be prepared.  When working with the VBS, we had limited time, so I prepared the water bottle the night before.  They had enough time to decorate them.  If I had not done that, they never would have completed it.  With the fairy garden, I had all the items lined out on tables and in bowls.  We walked through the steps together.  

4.  Let them do their own work.  As the leader, for me this easy.  For the mama's not so much.  Yes, some of these projects might end up at the fair and be judged for a ribbon.  However, they do not need to be perfect.  As a superintendent in the Cultural Arts Department at our county fair, I hear what the judges say about projects.  Some of the ones who are "up for merit" are not perfect - they want to know the child made it.  

5.  Have fun.  I sure did.  It is a fun week for me to open up our farm and home to the 4-H kids.  Yesterday, we had a group of the "littles" (younger sisters).  They all brought their doll buggies and babies and were running up and down the driveway playing together.  We had one in only underwear as she got wet from the garden hose (conveniently, as it was about 80 - smile).  Don't get stressed out if the project doesn't work.  We made cement hands and the fingers broke off.  We decided we would call them zombie hands and stick them out of the dirt.  Wasn't my plan...but, I like it.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Linked to:  

http://lovemademyhome.blogspot.com/2016/07/five-on-friday_22.html
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