Kids Art Activities

Make Your Own Toys

clay toy

The kids art activities wouldn't be complete without a section on making toys. It combines the two things children like most, creating and playing. Try one of the ideas listed below for a neat art project.

With all art activities, take the age and abilities of the child into consideration before beginning any project.

Expect that all children will not always follow step by step directions. Let children create the way they see fit. Kids art activities are meant to be fun.

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Felt People

This is a kids art activity that will be played with long after the project is over. Draw the outline of a person on a piece of felt. Make sure the arms are away from the body and the legs are separated. Glue the felt to a piece of cardboard, and cut out the shape. Use markers to make a face on each person and yarn to create hair. Using scrap material, use the doll as an outline to create dresses, pants, shirts, and shoes. The material will stick to the felt.





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Alphabet Puzzles

On index cards, make a Capital letter on the left side of the card, and a lowercase letter on the right. Cut through the middle of the cards using a wavy line to create a puzzle for each letter.

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Sawdust Critters

Mix two cups of sawdust with one cup of wallpaper paste. Add water very slowly until the mixture forms a thick dough. Shape the dough into the critter of your choice. While still wet make antennas with chenille stems (also known as pipe cleaners). Use beads or tacks for eyes. Let dry completely. Once dry, the critters can be painted.

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Craft Stick Puzzles

Lay several craft sticks side by side lengthwise. Use masking tape to tape them together. Flip the sticks over, and using paint or markers, draw a picture on them. Let dry completely, then remove the tape to create a puzzle.

*Some kids art activities encourage sharing. This is one of them. If using this particular activity with a group, mark each stick on the taped side (tiny red dots for one child, tiny blue ones for another...) before you pull them apart. The kids tend to "trade" puzzles to build.

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Match Game

Cut index cards vertically in half. Choose two cards and color one side of each in the same color. Choose another color and do the same with two more cards. When the cards are all colored, flip them over and take turns seeing who can find the most matches.

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Personal Puzzles

Give each child a plain sheet of white paper. Let them draw whatever they like. Glue the paper to a thin sheet of cardboard. Let dry. Cut into puzzle pieces.

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Noisemakers

Punch two holes in a toilet paper tube about one inch from each end. Decorate the tube as desired. When finished, wrap a piece of waxed paper over one end, and secure with a rubber band. Blow or whistle into the open end.

*Some kids art activities can get noisy. This one does. Lots of whistle noises and loud laughter. (You've been warned.)

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Tube Toy

Decorate a paper towel tube as desired, using paints and markers. Let dry completely. Wind yarn (any color) around a ping pong ball. When completely covered, tie a tight knot, and leave about 12 inches of yarn hanging from the ball. Make a small hole (adults only) ½ to one inch from the top of the paper towel tube. Push the yarn through the hole and tie. The children can then hold the tube, swing the ball and try to catch it on the end of the tube.

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Spoon People

Use wooden kitchen spoons to make people. Use markers to create faces, and yarn for hair. Duck down at the end of a table and hold the “people” so they can be seen above the table for a quick puppet show.

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Binoculars/Telescopes

Give each child two empty toilet paper tubes. Let them decorate in any way they like using crayons or markers. When dry, tape the two tubes together for a neat set of binoculars. Use paper towel tubes to create telescopes. For added fun, try covering one end with colored plastic wrap. You may have to use two layers to make things appear colored.

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Stuffed Bears

Draw an outline of a bear on one side of a brown grocery bag. Trace an identical outline using the other side of the bag. Cut out both outlines. Using paint, markers, and crayons color one side of each outline. Let dry completely. Start at the top and glue the edges together. Stuff small crumpled bits of newspaper inside as you are gluing. Paper clips will hold the edges together until they are dry. If desired, you can place a hole in the top with string for hanging.

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Clay Toys

To make the clay you will need: 1 cup of flour and ½ cup salt. Mix with your fingers in a large bowl. Add a couple of drops of food coloring to ¾ cup of water. Add this to the flour and salt mixture. Add one tablespoon of cooking oil. Mix well. Mold the clay into the shape of your choice. Let dry, and the objects can be carefully painted.

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Easy Kids Art Activities using items you most likely have on hand...

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