One way to keep kids busy during the summer is to give them crafts to work with. What better reason to do a craft than a holiday? I have provided instructions for three 4th of July crafts that are easy for kids to make with easy to find materials you may already have at home. I have included two wreath projects (one for younger kids and one a little more difficult for older kids), a bean shaker and a photo frame idea. Let your kids have some fun with the following 4th of July craft ideas.
Handprint Wreath Version #1 (Younger Children)
Supplies: Large white sheet of paper (or 4 regular sheets taped across back to form larger sheet), blue and red finger paints (or other washable paint), crayons or markers, glue, decorations as desired.
Directions: Draw a large circle on the paper for your child. Then let them use the paints to put their handprints around the circle. It’s best to use one color first then let it dry before moving on to the next color. Let your child be creative and put his or her handprints at all different angles along the circle. You can overlap colors as many times as you like, letting dry between each color addition. After the paints are dry. Let your child write a message in the middle of the wreath. If desired, you can glue little buttons or beads or other items on various parts of the handprints for added flair.
Handprint Wreath Version #2 (Older Children)
Supplies: A paper plate (or a circle cut out of cardboard covered in white paper), red, white and blue construction paper, scissors, glue, yarn, decorations as desired.
Directions: Let your child trace then cut out his or her handprints on the blue and red construction paper. You will need 4 or more handprints of each color. Cut the center out of the paper plate, leaving the outside ring. Your child can then glue the cut out handprints to the paper plate ring in any combination they choose. If desired, the wreath can them be decorated with buttons, beads, stickers, anything you have on hand, you can even hang lengths of streamers from the bottom in red, white and blue. Use the yarn to hang your child’s 4th of July creation.
Here I thought I made this up myself – but you can find almost the same thing at DLTK1!
Supplies: 2 paper plates, a stapler, crayons, markers or paint, dried beans, decorations as desired.
Directions: Have your child color the backs of the paper plates in shades of red, white and blue as desired using crayons, markers or paints. Place the plates together with the colored sides out. Help your child to staple the plates together near the outer edges, staples close to each other so no beans will fall out. Leave a large opening on top. Put a lot of dried beans in it, different amounts will give different results. Then finish stapling the plate all the way around. You can glue on decorations as desired, even lengths of streamers. Now your child can make lots of noise on the 4th of July.
Patriotic Photo Frame
This is definitely not a professional quality frame. It is something personal and fun for the kids.
Supplies: Small white poster board, glue, scissors, ruler, red and blue washable paints, a photo (even better if from the 4th of July), decorations as desired.
Directions: Glue the photo to one corner of the poster board. After glue is dry, cut around remaining edges of photo. Measure your photo. Cut out a piece of poster board that is ½ inch bigger on all sides than your photo. Carefully cut out the center of the poster board, so that the remaining frame will be 1 inch wide. Allow your child to make red and blue thumbprints on the frame. Let dry then add decorations as desired. Add glue to the edges of the picture. Then set frame evenly on top of the photo and press firmly. Allow to dry.
There are hundreds of craft sites on the internet. Many 4th of July crafts offered require materials that I don’t have on hand and just can’t afford to buy. A few sites that offer simple and cheap 4th of July craft ideas are: Enchanted Learning2, Melissa’s Buzz Off on alphamom.com3 and DLTK’s4.
1 DLTK’s Sites; USA Handprint Wreath; www.dltk-kids.com
2 Enchanted Learning; Activities and Crafts for July 4th; www.enchantedlearning.com
3 Alpha Mom Inc.; Melissa’s Buzz Off: Great Fourth of July Crafts for Kids; www.alphamom.com
4 DLTK’s Sites; United States Crafts; www.dltk-kids.com