Getting children in kindergarten involved in crafts is a wonderful way to expand on the learning activities of their class. Crafts can help promote good hand-eye coordination, use of imagination, cooperation with others, and direction following. Some crafts can go a step further by helping them learn colors, numbers, shapes, math, science, history, languages, and just about anything else you can think of.
This article will focus on your child and you making a chain of kindness together. This craft can be modified in many ways to suit your desires. For instance you can make a chain of chores, a chain of celebration (to count down days until a certain special day), a chain of days (for helping young children learn the days of the week), etc. This craft is fun, fast, and relatively easy, so come up with as many uses as possible for your home!
The length of the chain is flexible for this craft. You will need one strip of colored construction paper and one strip of white paper for each chain. Adjust the amount of supplies you will need depending on how short or long you want the chain to be.
These are the supplies you will need to make a chain of kindness:
Colored construction paper
Several pieces of white paper
Thin tip Markers, crayons, or color pencils
Glue (glue sticks are easiest)
Optional- any other decorating supplies you wish, such as glitter.
The first thing your child and you will do is cut one strip of white paper and one strip of construction paper for each chain that you need (cut both sets of strips the same length). Make sure to cut the white strips of paper slightly smaller in width than the strips of construction paper.
Now glue one strip of white paper horizontally on each strip of construction paper with the ends lining up. Let the strips air dry for about 5 or 10 minutes (depending on the type of glue used).
While the strips are drying have your child think of one nice thing to put on each one. The phrase can be about one person in particular (sister, brother, mother, father, friend, etc.), themselves (this is good for a self esteem boost), or no one at all (just generally nice things to say about everyone). You can even have them come up with one phrase for each person they know.
A few examples of phrases to put on the chains are: I am a good person, (insert name) is very nice, daddy is handsome, (insert name) is the best brother/sister ever, etc. The phrases your child comes up with will depend on their age. A little encouragement and help is good but let your child take the lead and come up with some phrases on their own. Whatever the phrase, remember to keep them relatively short as you don’t have too much space.
After your child has come up with several ideas or phrases get out the strips and help him/her write them down. If your child hasn’t begun to write yet you might want to write it for them. It is easier to use thin tip makers or colored pencils as opposed to crayons for writing (especially for beginning writers).
Once your child and you are finished writing the phrases on the chains it is time to decorate them. Your child can draw fancy borders on the strips, add hearts or dots, glue on some glitter, or anything else they like. Just make sure any added decorations do not cover up the message on the strip.
Now glue the first strips ends together to make a circle or link. Now loop the next strip through the first one and glue the ends together. Repeat the process of looping each strip through the previous circle/link and gluing the ends together until you are out of strips. Let the glue air dry for 5-10 minutes.
You now have a chain of kindness! Each day have your child remove one circle/link of the chain and read the phrase. For an added effect you can have your child carry the strip around in their pocket for the day and remove it a few times to reread it.
This craft can also make a wonderful gift for someone your child cares about. Maybe your child could make one for their teacher, stating the reasons why he/she is glad to have them as a teacher for teacher appreciation day. The same is true for any holiday and nothing says I care about you more than a homemade gift from the heart!
Please note: This craft requires the supervision of a grownup. Children should not be allowed to handle scissors or other sharp objects alone.
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