With the holidays coming up, it’s always good to know a few “rainy day" ideas that you can pull out to have kids work on to get them away from their iPads and game centers for awhile. But sometimes you can actually use the same technology they love to help them create crafts for the upcoming special days.
Here are a few ideas on how to incorporate and use technology to design cool crafts for kids to make during the holiday seasons for school or home:
Candy Cane Mice
A creative idea for Christmas is to make mice out of candy canes and felt material. Kids can create them on a digital photocopier, choose the colors of felt they want and stick a candy cane on the end for a cute, curly tail. Younger children will especially enjoy this holiday craft and they can use technology to create something unique, rather than just by hand. Candy cane mice make great decorations around the tree or small gifts to others during the Christmas and holiday season.
Use Origami for Holiday Fun
Origami art and other similar crafts have been enjoyed by many kids over the years around holiday time, as well as by adults. There is a specific skill needed for this type of art but there are many tutorials on the internet telling how to do this. If you want to do simple crafts, try crafts made from egg cartons or construction paper. Then, make it technology-friendly by taking digital pictures of your craft and sharing them on your website or Facebook. Kids can connect with their friends and show off their craft when they are done. It will make them proud of their creations.
App & Game Creation
In today’s digital world, you can incorporate more technological expertise into your child’s world by having them use software to create an original app or game. There are sites which allow kids and adults alike to create a game or app that can be played on mobile devices without knowing any code.
Try App Design 1, or search for other tools online that allow kids design their own app. You can do it just for fun as a family project, or take it to school and let your kids share it with their classmates. They are sure to be amazed.
Once they create an original app using one of the online programs or standalone software applications, you can decide if you want them to actually upload their app to the market or not. In order to be a certified app developer, you have to fill out an online form and submit payment to Apple or Google Play for the registration fee, which recurs annually. But many development sites do not require you to be a registered app developer in order to develop apps, if you are only going to use them on your own personal smart devices.
Everyone loves music. When kids get to create their own music or midi composition, think of the fun they will have! There are many great music composition programs available today, both free and premium, so take some time to check around. From electronic drum programs to online virtual pianos, to iPad music apps where kids can mix their own tunes, you can use technology to help kids create an original holiday song for Christmas, Thanksgiving, or New Year’s Eve and watch the fun start to roll!
Make a Movie
Finally, just using a digital video camera to film a short movie with a holiday theme can be loads of fun around the holidays. Instead of making the regular old boring Christmas home video, spice it up by adding Christmas music using a simple video editor like Movie Maker. Enhance it further with creative titles and transitions. Add funny comments on the frames where appropriate. This can be a great gift for the holidays and people will appreciate getting such a personal gift from them that they will always treasure.
Halloween Potato Heads
We’ve all heard about making a jack-o-lantern for Halloween and dressing up in funny or scary costumes at Halloween. But have you ever heard of dressing up your jack-o-lantern? Using sophisticated 3-D printers, such as the new Google and Microsoft hardware like Microsoft’s Kinect, which is designed to handle most 3D printing jobs. Once you have a printing service in place, you can cut out 3-dimensional designs that can then be used as cut-outs and placed on the surface of a pumpkin or other Halloween object. Kids can create mustaches, funny mouths, eyes, or other peripherals that can be enjoyed by Halloween party-goers or trick-or-treaters.
You could use this project for Thanksgiving gourds and squash as well.