Christmas Arts and Crafts

Magic Reindeer Food: Cut a piece of Christmas material into an 8×8″ square. Onto a piece of saran place a tablespoon of oatmeal and a few sprinkles of colored sparkles. Twist the saran tightly and place in the center of the material. Twist and tie together with a piece of ribbon. To each attach this little verse: Magic Reindeer Food Sprinkle on the lawn at night. The moon will make it sparkle brightly. Santa’s reindeer fly and roam. This will guide them to your home.

Remind the parents to let their children sprinkle the “food” on the lawn before putting the children to bed.

Christmas gift idea…Handprint placemats. Take a solid fabric placemat and paint your child’s hands with fabric paint. Imprint one hand on each side of the placemat, then write the child’s name and year somewhere on the placemat. Makes a nice keepsake.

Rudolph – Cut reindeer silhouettes from sturdy brown cardboard. Have the children paint the reindeer with glue and sprinkle with coarsely ground cinnamon. Glue on a wiggle eye and tie a narrow red ribbon around the neck. These smell wonderful. They can be made to stand up if you glue cylinders of stiff paper to each leg. If you can’t buy coarse cinnamon you can buy cinnamon sticks and chop them in a coffee bean grinder. To clean your grinder, process some fresh bread.

For the month of December I send a Christmas tree shape home with each child the first of the month. With it I send a letter asking the parents to use any materials that they have at home to help their child to decorate the tree. I suggest lace, material, ric rac, sequins, etc. When they finish they bring them back to school and we put them on the bulletin board. I use a blue background with a snow scene. At the end of the month, I leave up the snow scene. and we add snowmen, penguins, etc. for January. The Christmas trees are great because each one is different and the parents and children really like working on this project together!

This is a very simple, low cost, Christmas ornament. Start with a small white paper plate. Fold the bottom up about an inch. Fold both sides to the middle leaving the top open. (looks a little like a burrito!) Have the child make a face on a 2″ pink circle. Glue the circle to the top of the paper plate, peeking between the folds. Hole punch the top of the plate and add a pipe cleaner hanger and there you have it — Baby Jesus wrapped in swaddling clothes!

This is a great winter holiday art idea for preschoolers to kindergartners. This project requires a lot of white paper towels!! Give each child about 9 paper towel sheets. Have your children crumple three together, then two, then one making each into a ball shape. Make a glue and water mixture and soak the last three paper towels in the solution. Squeeze out and wrap a wet towel around each of the dry crumpled balls. Arrange in a snowman fashion and let dry for one to two days. When dry they are hard and paint white. Add black construction paper top hats and etc. to decorate your snowmen. Be creative!! It sounds hard but is really quite easy!! It is sooooo cute!

I copied a picture of a gingerbread man out of a book that I had. Then I made out of construction paper hats, pants, shirt and shoes all different colors. I put a little glue in a container for each child and then gave them a paintbrush and let them dress their gingerbread man. They brushed the glue on where they thought the shirt would go and pasted it and so on. Then I let them paste on eyes that I had gotten from the craft store which made it look really good. After that I noticed many of them had continued to spread glue on top of the pants and shirts etc. (these are 2 year olds) so we decided to put glitter there which gave it a great look!!

Handprint Wreaths

You can use muslin or white construction paper for this activity. If using paper, laminate the finished product. Trace a light pencil circle onto material, then paint the child’s hand green and repeatedly place onto circle to form a wreath. When dry, add red thumbprint berries and a bow (if desired). Also, add in this poem (teacher handwrites it onto muslin, but you can glue a copy of it onto the construction paper):

My handprints made this wreath,

My thumbprints, each berry,

I hope this helps you have,

A Christmas that’s merry!

If using muslin, hang with yarn on a dowel rod. Don’t forget to have the child write his/her name and remember to put Christmas l99–

My daycare children made these ornaments for their parents:

Gingerbread people-These are less likely to break than other recipes which is perfect for the young children to work with & get home in one piece.

Fragrant Holiday Ornaments:

1 c plus 2 T. flour

3/4 c. cinnamon (I add a teaspoon of ground clove too)

1 c salt

1 c water

Mix this well. Roll about 1/2″ thick and cut with gingerbread man/woman cookie cutter(or any other shape that you may wish to use). Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for approximately 20-25 minutes, depending upon size of the ornaments. Place a hole in each ornament before baking for hanging (I used a straw). These smell really wonderful–& make the house smell great when they are baking. If they start to lose their fragrance just rub an emery board on the back of them. They may be decorated with puffy paint, tempera paint or left as they are. Tie a ribbon through the hole made by the straw to hang them up. The children loved making these and the parents loved receiving them!

Take a photo of each child and mount in a frame made of pasta shapes which have been sprayed gold/silver.