Tips for Arts and Crafts with Babies and Toddlers

We absolutely love doing arts and crafts with our little guys! And, of course, they love it too! We love the messy and the not-so-messy activities.

  1. The first tip is just to be sure and remember that art with kids is always more about the process than the product! you should try to maintain very low expectations for the final product. Which bring us to point number two…
  2. Please, always let your little one actually do the project! Their turkey may turn out looking nothing like a turkey. Their rainbow my turn to a nasty color when all of the colors get mixed together. Of course, help and guide, but what is the point in letting them do art if you are going to do it all for them!!
  3. Prepare in advance when possible. Try to gather and set everything out while your little one is occupied. This way you’re not trying to hold your kids paint covered hands while looking for something you need! This will allow you to get the most time crafting too because they aren’t over it before you even start!
  4. Choose a space you are okay with getting messy. We LOVE to do our art projects outside because it gets us outside and it makes clean up easier when there is a mess. A plastic tablecloth from the dollar store is another great way to setup to make clean up easier, put it down under the art zone!
  5. Speaking of paint covered hands, remember that some days you are not in the right space to do an art project, and that is fine! Know how you are feeling, if you think paint covered hands might be the thing to send you over the edge, today might not be the day!
  6. Find inspiration online! Whether you are going on a trip that week and you can pull an idea from that theme, or you are looking for something holiday specific, there are TONS of ideas online!
  7. Be artistic with your littles! Even if you aren’t an artist, that is okay! Our boys love when we participate with them! Whether it is simply drawing with chalk or doing some of the art kits together! I am not a great drawer especially of dinosaurs or rhinos (which are requested A LOT) so then we get to talk about what mom drew and sometimes what it looks like instead and laugh together too!
  8. Buy ready made kits. You don’t have to make art time difficult on yourself. There are tons of fun activities out there. A lot of them come with all of the supplies you need! These are especially fun when you just want something quick to grab or you can even take them on a trip with you!
  9. Painters tape can make it easier to help little ones with doing things on their own! I like to buy ceramic planters (usually from Bullseye’s Playground at Target) and will often tape off certain spots while he paints then let it dry and tape off again, until the whole thing is painted, to help him stay in the lines!
  10. Remember that stickers and paper can count as art time too! Giving kids time to be creative and express themselves is the goal! So, if you aren’t feeling creative yourself, or if you can’t handle cleaning up one more mess today, this is a good route to go!
  11. We have some non-messy supplies (coloring books, paper, crayons, stickers) stored low where the boys can access anytime they are feeling creative by themselves!
  12. Lastly, do not compare your child’s art or your ideas for crafts to anyone else. (or the frequency of your art projects) Be inspired by others, but since it is truly all about the process and the fun, do not compare! Be proud of your child for their work and be proud of you for being willing to put in the time and the clean up!

After the art is complete we need some FUN ways to display it…

  • The refrigerator with magnets
  • We have a Look What I Made Sign and that is Brooks’ favorite spot to hang his art!
  • It can be a lot of fun to frame them (thank you Kami for this GREAT idea!) and it makes them feel really special!

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