Crafts are a way to not only keep young children entertained, but also encourage their sense of creativity. When planning a craft idea for a young child, such as a 1-year-old, it is important to choose one that is both easy and safe. Fortunately, there is a wide variety of craft ideas that meet these criteria.
Have your 1-year-old string together objects to make Christmas garland. She will need a long piece of yarn and objects to string onto the yarn, such as Cheerios or pretzels. Although beads are a popular choice for stringing garland, they are a choking hazard. For a 1-year-old, it may be better to only use objects that are edible or that cannot be easily swallowed. Secure one end of the string first, then allow the child to string objects until the yarn is full. Once completed, secure the other end of the string and help her wrap the garland around the Christmas tree.
Small children love to make noise, so consider a craft that doubles as a musical instrument. To make a tambourine, you need two paper plates, crayons, dry beans or macaroni, and a stapler. Allow your child to decorate the paper plates with crayons. Once finished, staple the two plates together halfway around, forming a hollow in the middle. Allow the child to fill the tambourine with beans or macaroni until half full, then staple the plates the rest of the way around. Your 1-year-old can shake the finished tambourine.
Although most child-friendly paints are nontoxic, there is a safe way to allow a small child to finger-paint without the worry. Mix together a big bowl of chocolate pudding and allow him to paint with pudding on a large piece of paper. To make cleanup easier, do the craft outside and dress him in an old T-shirt that you don't mind getting dirty.
An alternative is to have your child sit at the kitchen table and use different-colored ice pops to draw pictures on white paper. As the ice pops melt, they will leave behind traces of color on the paper. Provide the pops in a variety of colors, such as red, orange, green and purple. Although this craft may be a bit messy, it is typically easier to clean up than paint.
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