Barefoot by the Sea: Perfect Spring Crafts for the Kiddos!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Perfect Spring Crafts for the Kiddos!

Although our weather last week wasn't outstanding, we still managed to get outside and enjoy the drier days.  Since my kids enjoy crafting, it was a great opportuity to experiment with some simple Spring crafts.  They were easy, enjoyable and incorporated our love of the outdoors! 

First up - the birds!  We have a lot of trees that surround our backyard and have a lot of birds living around us.  We picked up Backyard Bird Watching for Kids up at the library last week to help us identify some of the species we have in our backyard.  The book is a great resource and includes ways to attract different species, instructions to build a variety of birdhouses and information about our feathered friends.  We may need a copy for our home library.  So far, we've seen bluejays, cardinals, chickadees and robins.  Of course this wonderful book made us want to attract more birds so we whipped up a batch of these bird cookies....they smelled yummy and our birdie friends are enjoying them!  The girls are loving watching them from our kitchen windows!
Bird Cookies
1/2 c peanut butter
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cup birdseed
Mix well and shape into a ball.  Press flat to 1/2 inch thick.  Place on baking sheet.  Gently poke a hole in the middle of the "cookie".  Bake at 425 degrees for 30 minutes and cool completely.  Hang with a string outside.  

We also made some little rock people.  We've painted rocks in the past but this time, our mission was to find some unusual shaped rocks.  We actually found one that was shaped like a little heart.  The girls were so excited to find different shaped rocks!
Painted Pebbles
Gather stones or rocks outside, try to get your little ones to spy unusual shapes and sizes.  Paint with acrylic or watercolors.  Glue googly eyes to make little faces.  These are great Father's Day paper weights for Dad!

Lastly, we did some collecting and painting.  And, finally used our Leaf Collecting Album and got right down to some...
Leaf Painting
Go on a nature walk and collect leaves - Spring is a great time to do this, as you can find a lot of old Fall leaves leftover or new leaves knocked down by the April wind.  Basically, you collect different types of leaves with vein patterns.  Paint an even coat of nontoxic paint on top of a sponge.  Place the ribbed side of the leaf on the top of the sponge.  Then, place your paper on the leaf and press gently for 15 seconds.  Remove top paper carefully and gently peel off leaf, holding by its stem.   When we did this over school vacation, we used different colored paints and overlapped the leaves to create an interesting collage.  It's also a great idea to do this and include the tree species in a nature book or album. 

These were really fun activities and economical!

Happy Exploring!

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