Lots of ideas for kids who love art as much as they love being outdoors
Kids love being outside on sunny days, and craft projects that they could enjoy outside enable them to take advantage of using freely-available natural materials while also learning about the natural world. Here are five fun ideas for you to try.
1. Tree-rubbing book
This is such a fun way to combine art with learning about different trees – kids who undertake this crafty task should ask themselves do different types of trees have different bark patterns?
You will need: a thick board, two sheets of thick card, a hole punch, string, white paper, pens, crayons, scissors.
Firstly, place white paper over the tree bark and rub over with a crayon. Next, pick a couple of leaves and place on the board. Then, place white paper over the top and rub over with a crayon.
When you have a few trees you can make a book by punching holes in the paper and thick sheets of card and tying them together with string. Use pens, crayons, and perhaps some cut-out rubbings to decorate the cover.
2. Pressed flower cards
Once completed these make beautiful personalised cards to give to family and friends.
You will need: some heavy books, newspaper, card, scissors, glue, pens.
Pick flowers from wild areas or your garden, making sure not to collect endangered species from the wild (if in doubt, don’t pick!). Place your flowers between sheets of newspaper and leave pressed between heavy books for a couple of days.
While waiting for your flowers to flatten you can cut and fold card into gift card shapes.
When the flowers are pressed, arrange them on to the front of the gift card and glue down. Personalise the card with a message and any other decorative touches you like.
3. Sand painting – A fun and easy summer art project.
You will need: thick sheets of paper, glue, dry sand.
Begin this project by drawing a picture with glue on a sheet of paper. If you can’t think of what to draw then how about drawing a picture of a boat or a seagull or even a picture of yourself. Sprinkle sand over your work of art, leave for a few moments and then simply shake off the excess sand.
4. Seashell mobile
This pretty mobile looks so good when suspended from the ceilings of bedrooms, living rooms or classrooms!
You will need: seashells, string, two pieces of dowelling rod (no longer than 30 cm), glue.
Collect seashells from the beach and attach them to the string with glue. Allow the glue to dry. Tie the dowelling rods into an X shape with string. Tie the shell strings onto the dowelling and stand back to admire your handiwork!
5. Toilet roll bird feeder
The birds in your garden will be grateful that you made this practical piece of art.
You will need: toilet roll tube, peanut butter, birdseed, a blunt knife (make sure that an adult is present for this task).
Just spread peanut butter onto the toilet roll tube, roll in birdseed and hang over a branch. Build this bird feeder and the birds will come to your garden!
About the author: J Christie is the promoter of Yellow Moon arts and crafts company.