The past month, Summer and I have been doing crafts together. In line with my resolve to become more intentional about teaching her new things through toddler play, I have come up with fun activities to do together, and most of it (so far) are simple art projects, using things available to us at home. I even made an activity planner so I can plot out things we could do and record things we have done. It’s been a lot fun and really interesting. Summer has discovered glue and now loves gluing things together. She has also learned to name different colors and is currently learning to name different shapes. She wants to hold all the art materials and grab everything so we’re also working on patience and taking turns
Even if I have planned out activities for her, I don’t always stick to it. A lot of times, when I find that there’s something more suitable or interesting for her to do at that particular moment, I change the activity. Like that time when my best friend showed Summer her pet kitten, we let her play with it and she was so amused. The next day, she remembered and kept asking me about the “baby cat,” so I decided that we should make our activity about baby cats. I helped her make a cardboard cat and let her cover it with yarn so it’s soft and fluffy, just like the kitten she saw. It instantly became her favorite thing and brought it everywhere with her that week!
My favorite thing we’ve done so far is the cardboard tube tunnel. Using empty tissue roll cardboards I’ve collected over the months for crafting purpose, I taped a tunnel on our living room wall, placed a basket at the bottom and showed Summer how to drop paper balls into it. I will never forget the look on her face when she saw what happened the first time I did it. She was ecstatic and immediately insisted on dropping the ball herself! It was priceless! And I also mean literally. I am amused by how junk can make my kids so happy.
Doing crafts and fun activities together has been very helpful. It is a lot of work on my part because I have to keep thinking of ways to entertain her, but it’s very good for an active toddler like Summer because she learns to stay in one place and focus on that thing at a given time. When we make things together on our dining table, she is able to stay still because she is busy with her hands. Also, her fine motor skills are developed, which is important at her age.
I agree with my mother-in-law when she told me that doing art projects with Summer on a regular basis will make her love crafts. I would be so pleased if that happened! I want her to grow up in a house where we make things together and our hands are busy making art all the time.
I get ideas for toddler craft projects from many different websites and personal mommy blogs. Here are some of my favorites: