Keeping toddlers busy is a job all on its own, and keeping them busy with fun things to do isn’t always easy. Their innate curiosity, fast legs, and tiny hands make it easy for toddlers to find a mess instantly. Crafts are a great way to keep them busy, but you don’t want to make a headache for yourself! Try some of these no-mess crafts next time you’re stuck inside and looking for something fun to do with your toddler.
With just a little glue, some string, adult-supervised paper cutting, and a pack of patterned construction paper, you and your little one can bring animals and characters to life in no time. Start by asking your toddler to choose what they want to be and then cut out the basic shape for the face. Next, cut out a handful of other shapes like triangles, circles, ovals, and diamonds. Give your toddler the glue stick and have them decorate the mask how they want to! When finished, attach a string to the sides so you can tie it around their heads. That’s it! Your toddler can now totter around like a lion, an owl, or whatever they chose. Make a game of it. If he a lion? Crawl on all fours, roaring through the house! A frog? Jump across the room, ribbiting as you go!
This craft is an age-old classic. While most of us remember using uncooked macaroni for art in elementary school, toddlers love to use it to make necklaces! All this requires is multi-colored penne, macaroni shells, or any uncooked noodle that you can slide a string through. Let your toddler work on their motor skills by threading the noodles and coming up with their design! If you want a bit more of a challenge, have your toddler paint or glitter-fy the noodles before they string them on, just remember that adding this element takes this craft out of the no-mess zone.
In this no-mess craft, let your toddler explore by having them collect leaves and flowers from the park or your yard! Have them show you their favorite and immortalize them in a collage. You can have the picture be on wax paper, cardboard, construction paper, or even a campus. All it takes is your toddler laying out their design and helping you glue them down. A craft glaze such as Hodge Podge works best. You can even have your toddler decorate the whole collage after with their designs to fill it out!
Toddlers love to be involved in everything we do, especially in the kitchen. Next time you’re cooking and need to occupy them, give them a premade ‘book’ made out of construction paper and pipe cleaners as the binding, and ask them to draw and/or write down a recipe they want you to make! They can even draw what you are cooking, step by step. Since all this craft requires is crayons for the toddler, it’s about as mess-free as you can get!