Firstly, some super simple paper lanterns. These can be made in minutes & then strung up around the house - the great thing is that you can adapt this to whatever age children you’re doing them with. Pre schoolers can simply fold & cut with a little help, & older children can snip away & embellish to their hearts content! It’s a fab way to get out all your craft stash & then see where the mood takes you. On these ones, I got a bit fancy by cutting into the strips then using a hole punch to create little areas for light to get through. I love these draped under mantel pieces or hung from ceilings, but they would look equally beautiful placed on shelves with little battery operated tea lights underneath. Here’s a quick time lapse of how to make them. I’m a bit of a washi tape hoarder so I used that and stickers to decorate, but you could use ribbons, pom poms or any kinds of oddments that you may have at home.
Candle pictures are another really speedy and effective little activity - I used washi tapes for the candle body, although you could cut up strips of patterned papers or magazines. If you tear them at the top & bottom of the candle, this makes them look melty & drippy, just like real candles. We then used our Cotton Twist water soluble pencils to add a flame in yellow with a touch of orange. We blended with a brush and once dry, we drew on the wick with a black pen. I’m actually thinking of framing one of these as I love them so much!
Last but not least, a fun sensory experience making playdough madalas. Playing with playdough is just so relaxing anyway isn’t it? (We won’t mention the bits in the rug!) The added element of using dried beans and lentils to make mandalas makes it something that will definitely keep the little hands occupied for a bit longer. I used a very basic recipe of 2 cups flour, 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, 1/2 cup salt, 2 tablespoons cream of tartar, 1 to 1.5 cups of boiling water, a couple of drops of natural food colouring. I added a couple of teaspoons of cinnamon also for a beautiful natural scent.
I then raided our pantry for any dried beans I had to hand, the more shapes & colours the better. Talking about all the different beans & pulses was also a lovely thing to do and prompted some tastings during the week! Obviously these mandalas were more of a process activity but if you wanted to make ones that you could keep & display you could try using a salt dough recipe and baking them at the end.
And if you’re after some Diwali gifts, our beading activity box & bracelet kit could be just the thing! The bracelet tin holds everything you need to make one bracelet all in a handy tin. While the beading box contains all the precious components you need to make 10 bracelets, including marigold flower beads, luxurious gold multifaceted beads as well as brightly coloured spacers.