Kids love the holidays! You don’t have to do everything yourself because they love to be included in the preparations too. So why not go along to your local art and craft store and stock your home with a few materials so that kids can make ornaments and other things in preparation for Christmas? This will save you buying ready-made and give them plenty to do in those last few weeks when they just can’t wait.
There are an infinite number of ideas for things to make at Christmas that you can find in books, online or just from your own imagination. Here are a few ideas to start you off. We hope these will help you have a magical time with your kids this December – and if you’re stuck for gift ideas, see the top 10 Christmas toys this year here.
How To Make Christmas Decorations
A child can make many different kinds of ornaments for the tree and the walls. Why not leave the factory-made decorations in the attic this year and have your kids produce everything home made? They will so proud of the results. The tree may not look like as organized as usual but the children will be so happy with it!
If your kids are old enough to work with glass bulbs safely, you can buy plain ones ready to decorate. If not, look for plain balls made of plastic or fabric. Then you’ll want to get the materials to make them shine!
Craft materials that will be great for making Christmas decorations but also useful the rest of the year include glitter, craft glue, ribbons, sheets of brightly coloured velvet, felt and other fabrics, and maybe some beads or other shiny objects to attach to the ornaments. Older children can use a glue gun to create raised designs on glass balls: look for instructions for creating 3D Christmas ornaments.
Making paper chains for the walls is something that kids have been doing at home for generations. Even the smallest children can help to colour strips of paper that you or the older kids can then glue together into a chain. This is one of the cheapest ways to decorate your house too!
How To Make Your Own Christmas Cards
Making Christmas cards takes time and you probably wouldn’t want to make all of your cards yourself, but when it comes to involving the kids in the preparations, this is perfect. They can easily and cheaply create their own cards for grandparents and other family members and friends who will appreciate them.
They can either do this in the traditional way by drawing on cards that you or they have cut to the right size, or with cut and paste pictures from magazines, or use a computer to pick out pictures to print onto cardstock paper. This could be photos of the family or anything copyright free that you find online. A good source of copyright-free images is Wikimedia Commons.
Then of course you’ll want to write a message in each card and have everybody in the family sign it. Some older kids will enjoy addressing or decorating the envelopes too (you just might want to check the addresses when they are done!) This makes it so much more personal than a store-bought card.
Make Bags for Christmas Presents
Kids can use plain brown or white paper bags to create decorated Christmas wrap or personalized bags to put wrapped gifts in. You can order a selection of sizes online – eBay is a good source. Then decorate them with the same materials that you have for the ornaments.
Why not involve your kids in making Christmas cookies to give away too? You can put them in the bags and deliver them to neighbours and friends – if you can prevent enough of them from being eaten the moment they come out of the oven!