Feb 15, 2013

Teaching Kids To Craft

I am always a bit frustrated when I see kids craft projects posted on the internet that couldn't possibly have been created by a kid.  Adults make "perfect" craft projects but kids create very differently from adults and guess what?  They think their final product is amazing no matter how it looks.  I am a firm believer in letting my children express themselves as they create and even though I sometimes have to stop myself from "perfecting" their project, I encourage them to make it how they want.  So the other day when we were going to make some birthday cards for grandma I quickly whipped up this project:
I cut out all my pieces but didn't put it together.  I let my girls pick their own papers and then drew all the pieces for them to cut out.  They did the cutting of everything but the feet and black eyeballs.

Then, and we have never it done it this way before, but what we did is I showed them (instead of just telling them) what to do as I put mine together.  It worked out so well and I wasn't frustrated because they weren't following or understanding my directions.  I told them to watch and showed what to do each step and then they repeated on their pieces.  It was so much funner that way and they didn't get frustrated and want to give up because they didn't know what I was talking about.

In the end this is how their owls turned out:

Now here is a good comparison of what an adult can do verses a child.  But theirs are still adorable. I am really proud of how well they watched and followed directions.  Why didn't I think of show as you go crafting before?
After we were done I asked them to dictate to me a message from Grandma.  Don't you just love how kids just say exactly what is on their minds:

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  1. I think the girls did a great job ! We will have to try "showing" Dominic how to do something instead of telling him all the time!!

  2. I love this post! I think it is so important to let parents know that the ultimate outcome is not a parents' perfect craft, but the process of the child learning how to craft!! Just posted on Craft GOssip!! Hope you get lots of reads:)

  3. This is a great kids craft. You are so right about the importance of not only crafting with them but the children doing the craft. I firmly believe that encouraging their creativity will be rewarded their whole life.

  4. I love this post! I followed the link on One Pretty Thing for your owl banner. After reading that post I wanted to go back & read this one, so very sweet.

    I love the owl on the right in, he looks like he has an attitude. ;o) And I love the way she did the feet on the left, it looks very proper with his feet crossed.

    I plan to use this pattern to make an owl card for a friend of mine. Thanks for sharing your creativity.


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