On the hunt for easy and affordable arts and crafts projects to entertain your kids? These seven projects are recommended by Circle of Moms members for the sheer fun factor, but they also help young children unleash their creativity and master fine motor skills.
1. Body Tracing
"When you're 4, you want to be bigger!" says Sylvia M., explaining why body tracing is so incredibly entertaining for preschoolers. "Show him just how big he actually is by having a friend or sibling or even Mom trace his whole body on paper. Brown paper rolls like they have in restaurants work best. Otherwise, use regular paper, trace each body section and collage them together like a puzzle then color!" Afterward, hang the finished piece on the bedroom door.
2. Homemade Bird Feeders
Creating simple bird feeders can be a thrill for animal-loving preschoolers. As Megan A. shares: "We just made bird feeders using pine cones (from the neighborhood), birdseed and peanut butter. The kids had a blast and the feeders attracted a ton of birds."
3. Torn Paper Art
All you need for Kelly W.'s easy craft project is colored paper and glue. "I would quite often draw a simple shape and give them strips of colored paper, which the children would tear into small pieces. They would 'paint' the drawn object with glue and stick on the small bits of paper," the former preschool teacher explains.
Other moms suggest creating collages with paper and other household items, ranging from pasta pieces to cotton balls. "Old fabric and buttons works great. I bought a huge tin of old buttons at an auction once and you won't believe how much fun the kids had with that stuff," says Tina C.
5. "Sand" Art
"My daughter is almost 3 and she loves this one," shares Christina B., who recommends creating sand art with colored cereal. "You'll need Fruit Loops cereal, baby food jars, a funnel (or you can make one with a piece of paper), and baggies. Start with having your kids sort the cereal by color, then place each color in their own bag. Have them crush the cereal until it becomes fine (like sand) and then using the baby food jars and the funnel, have them create 'sand art,' which you can give away as gifts."
6. Felt Boards
Looking for an activity with minimal mess? Consider creating naturally clingy felt objects, which won't require glue. "Make a felt board (we tacked felt onto an old dry erase board) then you can have the kids draw shapes, numbers [or] animals on the other pieces of felt. Cut them out and stick them to the felt board (kinda like refrigerator magnets)," Kristi Q. shares.
Painting is one of the most reliably entertaining preschooler activities. Myra M., mom of a 3-year-old, advises: "Get out some water-based colors and lots and lots of paper, and just let your girl go for it. Also, get some interesting textures to paint as well, like rocks, sticks, shells, etc."
What's your favorite arts and craft project for preschoolers? Share in the comments below!