Kids

Easy crafts for toddlers for the non crafty mom

If there is one thing that my toddler and little boy get really excited about, it is doing arts and crafts!  My trouble is that I’m not too crafty and don’t like huge messes to clean up.  And I don’t like crafts that I have to do for them. So here are some easy crafts for toddlers (and older kids) that we enjoy! Sometimes, daily.  The thing I noticed is that for it to stay fun, we have to put it away.  Then it’s like new the next day 🙂

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Easy Crafts for Toddlers:

Markers and a coloring book.

We tried crayons because they seem less messy, but my 2 year old just snaps crayons in half and doesn’t know how to push down hard enough to draw, so we use markers. Markers have an instant gratification effect even with poor dexterity!   I still watch them and say “only on paper” a lot while she draws.

If I catch her drawing on her hands after I say not to, or on anything but paper, I put it away and tell her we can try again when she is ready to obey. It goes up and I’ll take it down the next day or even a few hours later when she’s forgotten about it.

Kid Stamps.

Stamps are perfect to use on old paper, the inside of shipping boxes, or old mail!  This is super fun and easy to keep around in a craft drawer somewhere or ziplock bag.

Do a Dot Washable Paint Markers.

Here is why I love them.  They don’t spill, and it doesn’t take much skill.  The little sponge tip is awesome, it’s like stamping almost. We use blank printer paper or if I’m extra on my game Ill print out free downloads of special Do a Dot papers that allow my 3.5-year-old to concentrate and practice filling in the dots.  If it’s easier to just buy a book full of Do a Dot pages, Amazon has this one.  They never spill, can be wiped off a table fairly easily. However, I still watch that they don’t try dotting up their legs and body because it stains their skin a bit for a day.

Side note, I let them take these outside and paint rocks, and they LOVE it.

Related Post: How to teach preschool at home, a practical guide

 

DoaDot washable paint
At 3.5 he could really do the dots well, which is why I think it’s worth it to get the dot paper. He concentrates and it also lasts longer, whereas Laila age 2 has fun just smudging them.

 



Play Doh

When contained to one area, this is a fav! I like it because they will play the longest with this.  I forget that a little kid can put a lump of play dough on a plate and call it…well…anything! Their imaginations are too cute.  I find these tools are what make it fun for them, also pictured below. If you don’t want to buy those then a cookie cutter does well.   My rule though, “if you eat it you’re too little to play with it”.  O man I sound like my mom now!

Related Post: How to get your picky eater to eat what you give them.

Dinosaur molds

Cookie cutter of any kind makes play dough more fun! These are SO cool, if you have a little kid who is into dinosaurs like my boy, these will extend play time waaaay farther!

Fruit Loops & String

Classic. It’s a snack and dexterity exercise! Use stiff string with a knot on one end so the fruit loops don’t fall off. Or, a pipe cleaner if you have them.  Or a thin new shoelace because it has that nice stiff tip.  Cheerios work too, but fruit loops have bigger holes so they are easier, and more colorful too!

Baking Soda & Vinegar

This could be counted as “messy” I guess, but if it’s outside I don’t really care as it can be hosed off! There is no cleanup and you don’t have to wipe your kids down, score! This can also just be done on a baking sheet inside.

We sprinkle spots of baking soda on the concrete outside.  Then, I get a little cup of vinegar and a medicine syringe (from an old Tylenol bottle or you can buy them at any grocery store).

Little ones who can pull the syringe up and down can squirt the baking soda with vinegar and watch it bubble.  Lots of baking soda spots = lots of quiet play. I can easily go through half a box. Add some food coloring to the vinegar for more fun! We hose it off or just wait for the rain when done.

 

Baking soda, vinegar, and a medicine syringe outside will keep them SO excited and just rinse it all away with some water at the end.

 

 

Related Post:  Indoor activities for toddlers 

Spaghetti noodles(uncooked) and marshmallows.

Ok, little kids really can’t build stuff out of these like big kids, but one day I was cooking spaghetti and they were getting really rambunctious. So I put about 10 raw noodles on the floor, and a handful of mini marshmallows (bigger ones work better), and told them to poke each marshmallow. WOW it was quiet for 10-15 min…thats like forever in toddler land! Of course they ate the marshmallows later…

A few hard spaghetti noodles and some marshmallows (or anything soft enough to poke) will buy you 10-15 min of quiet.
A few hard spaghetti noodles and some marshmallows (or anything soft enough to poke) will buy you 10-15 min of quiet.

Make a Mailbox (old tissue box)

Whenever we finish a tissue box, it’s a perfect mailbox, with zero craft skills needed.  I set it down, and they can stuff “mail” into it.  Totally entertaining I guess! To make mail, I either cut a cereal box apart and let them “address” the mail with a pen, (they scribble, it’s cute)…or just have them find toys to put in it like “packages”.  Easy peasy fun!

Art Easel Fun

My kids didn’t get this one until Laila was 2.5 and Nigel was 4, but it is AWESOME! It has a chalkboard, whiteboard, and paper roll with paint buckets. For a nonmessy day, just leave out painting and let them draw and erase.  Don’t forget to buy chalk, markers, and dry erase markers and paint as they do not come with this set. Or, get all those accessories in a pack here on Amazon.

Hape All in One Art Easel Review for Kids

You will not regret keeping some of these easy crafts for toddlers handy! I’d love to hear some other simple ideas for this not crafty mamma! Hope this gives you a little inspiration without feeling like you need to take a trip to the dollar store or throw your kids in the tub afterward 🙂 Simple is good.

 

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Here are some great toddler activities that are easy to do at home and not too messy. // Easy crafts for toddlers and kids for the non crafty mom // #toddleractivities #kidactivities #blueandhazel #toddler #kidcrafts
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2 thoughts on “Easy crafts for toddlers for the non crafty mom

  1. These activities look so fun! I’ll have to come back to this page when my son is a little older 🙂

    1. Thanks for reading! We just did the baking soda and vinegar one outside today and I love how excited he got to do it. Enjoy these days while your boy is so small!

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