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Tell Flora about keeping your LOs entertained during half term with arts & crafts - £200 JL prize draw NOW CLOSED

(107 Posts)
KatieBMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 24-Sep-13 13:10:19

The folks at Flora want to know if Mumsnetters use arts and craft activities to keep their LOs entertained during school hols like half term.

Here's what Flora have to say, "Arts and crafts are a great way to keep the kids entertained during half term, but what do you do with the mini masterpieces your LOs have spent so long creating? Instead of covering the fridge, Flora are turning scribbly shapes into scrummy Sandwich Cutters. We'd love to hear about your favourite piece of artwork from your LO and how you use arts and crafts to keep your kids entertained."

With half term approaching, is arts and crafts something you and your DCs will be doing? If so, what art and craft activities do your DCs enjoy the most? Do they love finger painting? Or perhaps they prefer getting creative with beads?

If you could choose one piece of your DCs' art to hang on your fridge hall of fame, what would it be?

If you do have a fave piece of artwork from your LO, why not enter it into Flora’s Facebook competition for a chance to win a sandwich cutter in the shape of your DC's best piece of art!

Everyone who posts on this thread will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will receive a £200 John Lewis voucher.

Thanks and good luck,


gazzalw Tue 24-Sep-13 20:08:42

Our DS stopped doing arts and crafts when he was about five and never looked back but DD is totally the reverse....she loves nothing more than glittering, colouring and making pictures.....but sometimes she does need to be reminded that we have a vast supply of arts and crafts stuff in the cupboard just waiting to be used.

Try to do arts and crafts related to the time of year it over half-term would anticipate doing Halloween pictures, carving Jack-o-Lanterns, doing firework pictures with chalks etc.....

I think it's important to have arts and crafts activities lined up particularly for the wet weather holidays.....

DS is doing art at secondary school now and had to do a collage for homework last week - he actually really enjoyed it so maybe his interest in arts and crafts might resurface?

DW was never really arty as a child but actually has a new-found love of arts and crafts activities as an adult....grin.

We have a special board in the kitchen just for "the creation of the day/week" - DW tends to keep art work up there for a week or so, then sift thro' it and anything that she thinks is really good, she dates and puts in a special funky portfolio for their memory boxes....

If we had one piece on the fridge it would have to be the DCs early attempts at self-portraits.....

MadMonkeys Tue 24-Sep-13 21:29:56

Painting, cutting and sticking and colouring are my 3.8yo DD's forte. The results are somewhat homogenous, but she is usually pleased with the results! We use them instead of wallpaper in the kitchen grin

dahville Tue 24-Sep-13 22:12:40

So far it is all about colouring and then adding glue and glitter; there is a lot of glitter residue in my house unfortunately.

My latest idea is to have some wire on the wall above my dresser and have an ever changing gallery of artwork.

BlackeyedSusan Tue 24-Sep-13 22:54:54

i have a drawer stuffed with boxes, lids, cellotape, masking tape, and bits and pieces of craft material for the children to help themselves. the masking tape is a must as the end is more difficult to lose and does not require scissors.

the sets for making cards or other things, thata we keep at granny's house are all mixed up in one box and the children are encouraged to be creative and not required to follow the rules.

i buy resourrces only when they are on offer somewhere. we are not short of stuff though. I have enough to keep your average class stocked for a year term.

it is a treat when I get the paints out. usually a half term activity.

Theincidental Tue 24-Sep-13 23:00:11

We go to the local craft bank and raid for interesting items.

I think the next project will pirate related! - sick puppet parrot, a hat and eye patch etc.

I'm not so much of a fan of 2d stuff and Ds likes making things to play with. We currently have garages made from boxes, some felt puppets and collages from the autumn leaves.

JustBecauseICan Wed 25-Sep-13 08:29:41

Dd is 9 now, so very much into "science" type making.....I bought her a load of those travel bottles and containers from Superdrug, and some body butters, essential oils and other assorted smelly gloop.

She spends hours on her bedroom floor experimenting (and then selling me back the products grin) I open the bedroom door every so often and throw biscuits in.

The best advice I would have is not to bother with "kits" but scour the pound shops etc and build up your own collection.

fuzzpig Wed 25-Sep-13 08:40:47

My DCs' latest was a shoebox aquarium, which they coloured blue on the inside and stuck fish on (you can suspend them from string too)

One fun way of using up youngsters' paintings - you know, the ones before they actually start painting objects or people, and they just end up covering the whole paper! - is to make them into something new. When DD brought home all her nursery splodges creations, I cut them out and arranged them into a snowman shape complete with scarf - I then used bits of craft foam to make stick arms and a carrot nose, and buttons for eyes. He's been up in the kitchen for years now, he's like a part of the family! And he's much more special as he was 'painted' by DD rather than using coloured paper.

This half term I'll be getting some more craft foam and using them to make prints. I did this at an art class I went to recently - draw a simple picture on foam, cut out bits of it and stick it onto thick card, and use paint to stamp it. If you have pieces of card exactly the same size you can do two colour prints by putting some foam on each piece, making sure you line them up correctly.

We might also do a collograph which (if I understood the teacher correctly...) is sticking loads of collage stuff on card and then using that to make a print.

I've really gone off the crafty make-your-own kits lately, so at Xmas I'm probably going to put together a big craft tower with 'raw materials' like loads of tissue paper, lolly sticks, buttons, ribbons, fabric scraps from the cloth shop (DD loves working with fabric), paint, glue, beads, glitter etc so they can just come up with anything they think of.

Mind you at Xmas I will make an exception for Hama beads - nice peaceful activity - and planning to introduce them to Shrinkles as well (toy of my youth grin)

Not sure I could choose a favourite piece, DD has done some really nice drawings in the past. She draws or writes in bed most evenings.

We usually do painting outside, they also love using pavement chalk. Our pathways are currently full of planes, storms and shipwrecks, and an enormous house which they did with the neighbours.

JS06 Wed 25-Sep-13 09:03:17

Over time we've amassed a large amount of childrens' art and craft efforts. From school and home we've got a separate box in the loft for Christmas items and it comes out each year on decorating day and we all go 'ahhh' or 'FGS, get rid of that" (son!). One year I did an overlapping collage of the kids' Christmas art in the kitchen, it was lovely and got positive comments from visitors but I want to preserve things now so haven't put them up again. For other items from the rest of the year I've laminated some pieces if it's possible to do it and keep them in the relevant box file for that year which I keep out during the year then store in the loft.

Used to love bath time crayons for a quick burst of art inspiration with the kids. Never took any photos unfortunately but that's a way of keeping the memories alive too.

CheeryCherry Wed 25-Sep-13 09:10:33

Each October half term we have a Christmas card making day! Yes its a bit early, but its lovely to have the time to spend on it all. I get organised in advance, getting the cards and a few bits and bobs. We use last years cards for ideas and cut out bits to use as toppers.
We also buy design-your-own calenders (from baker Ross or even lidll at the moment) and spend time creating art work for those... a few presents done in advance too!
I have framed a few pieces of art my Dcs have done... a painted tree, an African lady in silhouette and a couple of collage pieces.

stealthsquiggle Wed 25-Sep-13 09:10:49

I am not convinced that I will be doing arts and crafts to entertain my DC at half term, but then they are not really little and more (6 and 10). DD will entertain herself drawing and cutting things up and sticking them back together most afternoons after school. My role is just to periodically top up the craft drawers and shovel up the mess. I have some vouchers for The Works so we may go a little nuts in there grin. I also have some left over air dry clay which I would veto on a normal afternoon but might produce at half term. They will sometimes choose to collaborate on decorating and then playing with old cardboard boxes too, but not if I suggest it hmm.

Because they have both had the same teachers for YR and Y1,we have the same art projects from each, and we are thinking of framing some of them side by side. Most creations drift around the house for a while and then end up in the recycling, but I do have portfolios which I keep selected things in.

PuzzleRocks Wed 25-Sep-13 09:23:01

It's not something I enjoy or am any good at so I send them down the road to the fabulous local art workshop. My house is groaning with mini masterpieces. In fact the smell of oil pastels is a bit overwhelming in places.

My two are 6 and 4. They enjoy everything from biscuit and cupcake decorating, to pottery, jewellery and painting on paper. The dining room mirror is decorated with a string of small pieces of paper marbling. DD1 has recently taken up cross stitch too.

Now maths, that's something I love doing with them.

MakeTeaNotWar Wed 25-Sep-13 09:29:03

How crap am I? Can't bear all that glittery gluey mess. Papers & crayon are tolerable and all the "masterpieces" end up in the recycling. Rather leave all that stuff to nursery

stealthsquiggle Wed 25-Sep-13 09:36:02

MakeTea - not crap at all. Glitter is the work of the devil. There is no glitter in my house and I have been known to "lose" particularly glittery creations between nursery and the car blush

afromom Wed 25-Sep-13 10:07:24

DS is 9 and still loves a junk modelling project. Each holiday we get stuck in to something. Some of his highlights have been:
A giant rocket
An Olympic village made from shoe boxes, with a running track, swimming and diving arena, archery. We used the McDonalds toys for inspiration!
This year we made a Charlie and the Chocolate factory model.
A race track, with spectators, jumps etc for his remote control cars. That one took over the dining room table for 2 weeks!

He's not do much into sticking and cutting, more large scale boxes and junk modelling that then take over the house! Oh for the days of colouring and a bit of glitter!

We love doing these projects together, and it gives him something to do other than the tv and Xbox!

RubySparks Wed 25-Sep-13 10:26:58

Yes dd still loves doing craft things, her latest was a puppet theatre she made with a friend out of cardboard and an Adventure Time costume for comic convention, though I helped with some of that - her Xmas request last year was a sewing machine!
This October hols it will be all about Halloween, so that usually means costumes, cupcakes with bat, spider etc decorations, paper chains of skulls, bats etc and most years we do a party and decorate whole house with homemade and bought decorations.

BigGapMum Wed 25-Sep-13 10:37:32

DS is 5, and likes to start craft projects however he has problems with a very low attention span and rarely gets around to finishing them.

When he does painting he produces a finished picture and this often looks great. When the new pictures go on the fridge the old ones I've taken off go "on display" in the playhouse in the garden. They don't generally survive very long before they go in the compost bin.
This way we get a regular change of kitchen art, and no trauma when the old ones have to go.

WowOoo Wed 25-Sep-13 10:40:29

Both my sons still like doing arts and crafts. We'll do some on rainy days in half term.

My 4 year old likes painting, cutting, sticking, glitter, pipe cleaners, drawing all over himself with felt tip and anything quite messy.

My eldest likes drawing and will spend ages doing Minecraft or Lego style drawings.

They both like making marble runs from cardboard tubes and boxes. If it's a good enough box, they'll make a den or a home for some toys.

I have a picture of our family that my eldest son drew a while back. It's framed and in the hallway. I love it because it's so bright, so funny and we are all smiling.

ouryve Wed 25-Sep-13 11:51:54

mine are 7 and 9. 7yo has never been into arts and crafts an struggles to hold a pencil for long. DS1's efforts are more self led. He'll spend ages drawing out hundreds of pictures of things that fascinate him, such as street lights or houses or, more recently coins. I currently have a drawing on the fridge that he made of all the coins that make up the shield, superimposed onto an oversize pound coin, which has the entire shield on it. his pencil skills aren't great but the picture says a lot about him.

LindySfarne Wed 25-Sep-13 12:34:57

Dd has always been arty and we've done loads over the years. To mimic an expensive pottery shop experience at home we bought a big bag of plaster, then mixed it up and poured it into moulds ( loads on eBay), animals were the favourite but also fairies, and Disney characters. Then dd and friends would paint them. Great fun.

BadlyWrittenPoem Wed 25-Sep-13 16:24:57

We don't have school holidays as we HE but we do do plenty arts and crafts. I like to get my daughter to think of someone who might like the thing she's made or plan it for a specific person. One person liked a painting she did for him so much that he actually had it framed.

manfalou Wed 25-Sep-13 21:16:07

DS1 loves to colour (particularly on boxes) and do hand & feet painting but the favourite creative activity is making various items from play dough. Often food items. He's not really into glueing and sticking but thats ok.

sharond101 Wed 25-Sep-13 21:27:45

DS is still too young for arts and crafts but likes to crumple up paper and tries to draw if I offer him a crayon and paper so I hope he wil be the creative type as I love making things.

Theimpossiblegirl Wed 25-Sep-13 21:43:52

I wish half term was approaching- it is still 4 weeks away here.

We are planning an arty half term. We've just got a sewing machine so will be learning to make bags, bunting, cushion cases etc. My DDs are quite keen to tie dye too.

We love painting and buy cheap canvases to make gifts. I've kept quite a few of these.

I've also just invested in some glass paints and we're planning on painting some clear glass candle holders for the grandparents.

CMOTDibbler Wed 25-Sep-13 21:46:28

This half term, ds will be demanding to do pumpkin carving - he loves it! And probably make some lanterns too

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