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Category Archives: Christmas

Letter to Santa

I thought I would share this activity with everyone as Christmas is on its way and writing a letter to Santa is something my girls look forward to this time of year.  You can send your letter and use the service provided by Australia Post (details below) or you can reply to your children’s letter pretending to be Santa 🙂

I sit individually with both girls and write our letters. Lara tells me what she would like to write and I write it for her then she draws pictures for Santa. Olivia who is learning to write, writes some words herself and adds her pictures.  Once the letters are written the girls decorate them using pens, pencils, textas or paint.

Australia Post provides for Australian residents where you can post your letter in a red post box and Santa will reply. You can also down load Santa letter templates either coloured or black and white.  For more information see http://auspost.com.au/personal/letters-to-santa.html

Once your letters are written, addressed and stamped we walk down to the local letter box and post them. It is not long before Santa sends a letter back which is a very exciting day at our house!!

This is a great activity to do with children as it promotes language and literacy, creativity and imagination.

Santa Sleigh

I originally got this idea from My Little Bookcase and the Magical sleigh ride post…and I loved the idea so when an empty box appeared at our house (you usually have a few around Christmas time). I knew what we could do with it!

Thomas was a bit tired the day we did this so it was a good activity to keep him a bit busy and entertained.

What you’ll need:

A box big enough for your child to fit in

Stanley knife

Red paint

Glitter

Stickers (not necessary though)

Ribbon for reigns

What you do:

Cut a sleigh type shape out of the box using the stanley knife

Get your child to decorate the box using the paint, glitter and stickers (or whatever else you have laying around)

Attach ribbons to the front of the sleigh. I originally had one that made a loop but Thomas kept putting it around his neck so I cut it in half so there were 2 reigns.

Use your imagination and have fun!!

Thomas loves playing with his sleigh. It’s really brought a new dimension to Christmas this year… I also thought about cutting a hole in the bottom and attach straps so he can wear it and move around but we haven’t done that yet :-).

Reindeer Handprints

I can’t even remember where I saw this idea now… But I fell in love with it and knew that we had to make some :-).

These are really very easy and are so cute. We are going to use them as gift tags for our presents this year but they would also make a cute Christmas card or decoration for the tree.

It’s really easy to do, a bit messy but that’s all part of the fun…

What you need:

white cardboard

brown poster paint

red pompoms

goggly eyes

scissors

What you do:

Paint your child’s hand with the paint – older children may like to do this themselves. Make several handprints onto the cardboard. Allow to dry then cut out the hand prints. Attach the goggly eyes and pom pom noses.

Voile!

You can even attach a little ribbon if you’d like to make girl reindeer…

Thomas was very impressed with his crafty handprints :-)…

Merry Christmas 🙂

 

Christmas Threading

I really love doing this one with my girls.  These can be made and hung on the Christmas tree or this year I have hung them across the window. The girls love doing these and have asked to do this activity again and again.

What you need:

Pipe cleaners

Bells

Things to thread: Coloured pasta, beads, card board shapes

Thread the bell on to the end of the pipe cleaner and twist it over to secure.

Now its time to get creative! Kids can now make up their own designs. Make sure you leave about 4cm at the top of the pipe cleaner so this can be folded over and used to make a loop.

Now its time to hang you new decoration on the Christmas tree.

Or across a window (The photo isn’t the best)

Hand Print Christmas Tree

This idea came from celebrating many Christmas while working in child care.  I have adapted the idea so it can be made in a smaller home version.

What you need:

Paper

A large piece of paper

Green paint

A paint brush

Glitter

Glue

Sticky tape

Paint the child’s hand with green paint and make hand prints on the paper.

Once you have a collection of these cut them out and make you tree by placing the hands in a row making each row 2 hand shorter than the last so the hands make a triangle shape and the fingers of the hands look like the leaves on a tree.

Cut out a star shape paint it with glue and then sprinkle the star with glitter. Once dry stick it on to the top of your tree.

Hang your tree on your front door or on the fridge or we hang ours on the kids bed room doors.  You can include everyone that lives in your house hold or include all your family, friends and visitors that will call past during the festive season.

To add to this idea you can colour in or decorate some paper decorations to decorate the tree.  You can find lots of templates for these on the internet.

Christmas Tree Painting

This is a really easy and open ended Christmas activity for kids that also looks great hung up on the wall. The thing I dislike about a lot of Christmas crafts for kids is that the focus is usually on the product rather than the process. When children are involved in doing too many craft activities where this is the case, it can have an affect on their self esteem. Craft activities should be mostly about children using their imaginations and being creative. Anyway, I’ll get off my soap box now!

I did this painting with Thomas just spontaneously one day so it didn’t take a lot of preparation.

You will need:

1 sheet A3 paper (or any size you wish really)

Green paint and a paintbrush

Glue

Glitter

Sequins or stars

What you do:

Let your child paint the paper green.

Once the paint is dry, draw 2 lines on the paper one each side starting from a point at the top in the middle down to the bottom corners – to make a triangle.

With supervision, get your child to cut along the lines.

Cover the tree with glue and decorate with glitter and sequins or stars.

Coloured Pasta

Pasta of all different shapes and sizes can be used in craft activities especially at Christmas so I thought I would add a post about how to colour it.

You will need:

Green and red food colouring(These are good Christmas colours but you can really use any colour you like)

Pasta

Zip lock bags

Water

Paper towel

Foil

Add about a tablespoon  of water to the zip lock bag and a few drops of the food colouring. The more food colouring in you add the more intense the colour will be. Add a few handfuls of pasta and close the bag. Move the water around in the bag to make sure all the pasta is coloured. You can add more pasta at this stage if you find there is a lot of liquid still in the bag.

Leave the pasta in the bag flat for a minute then turn it over and leave it for another minute.  After a few minutes the pasta will absorb the colour, if you leave it for too long the pasta will go soggy.

Pour the mixture out onto a plate with paper towel and allow it to absorb the extra colouring mixture. Then tip the pasta onto a plate covered in foil and put into the sun to dry.  If you leave it on the paper towel it will stick.

The finished pasta:

I will post some craft ideas for the coloured pasta in over the next few weeks.