Learning & Activities


Cheap and Fun Craft Ideas to Do With Your Kids

Cheap and Fun Craft Ideas to Do With Your Kids

Coming up with free crafts and activities that you can do with your child will help you to be a part of entertaining them and sparking their creativity. The task may seem difficult to you though, if you have never tried this kind of brainstorming before or if you are not particularly craft-minded. You don’t need to feel overwhelmed, though. There are many free resources available to you throughout the internet, if you need an idea in a pinch, and in the books that you can get at your local library if you have a bit more time to plan.

Here are four ideas to get you started.


Help your children improve their manual dexterity, engage them in the kitchen, and do art all at the same time! Simply look up a simple recipe for salt dough, which is made up of flour, salt, and water, and get started. Your children can help you make up the dough itself and then you can all play with it together.

Whether you direct their play by offering up cookie cutters or suggestions of things to make (a person, a chair, a leaf, etc), or you choose to simply let them have at it, this activity will be a simple hit. The dough’s ingredients come from materials you will likely have hanging about and it's safe for your children to handle and even eat. When you are all done with it, you can bake the pieces that you and the children have made in the oven and preserve their artwork for posterity.


This activity can be performed like a treasure hunt either indoors or out. If you want to play outside, simply instruct your children to collect leaves, flowers, twigs and other bits of detritus into a bag that you provide. If you’d like to work inside, give them a collection of magazines, glossy advertisements, or even newspaper comics to tear up and cut out shapes and pictures from. When each child has gathered their material up, provide them with a piece of paper and some basic craft glue. Let them arrange and glue their components to their heart's content. When they’ve finished, you can set the collages they have created to dry before hanging them up or displaying them in some public area.

Marble Painting

This craft requires you to invest in some water-based paint, if you do not already have it lying around. Alternatively, you could pull some condiments out of the fridge and make this project into an edible art piece. Your other supplies will include a box, a marble, or other spherical-shaped object, and a piece of paper for each child. Put the paint into easily accessible containers such as wide jar lids. This allows you to limit the paint your kids have access to and still cover the marble easily. Let you child choose their color and drop the marble in the box, onto the sheet of paper. Your children can tilt and roll the marble around the box until it runs out of paint or they’re ready for a new color. At the end of the day, they’ll have their own Jackson Pollack style artwork to display.

Paper Plate Art

Many families have paper plates lying around, especially during the summer when barbecues and picnics are popular. Paper plates don't have to just be for eating, though! They can be for art, too. Grab a paper plate for each child, some crayons or markers, and let them have at it!

Your child can explore the limits of their imagination with a blank slate. They can put a drawing on the plate, color it in a variety of colors, or just scribble all over it if they'd rather. When your child is done creating their masterpiece, punch two holes in the top with a hole-puncher.

Then, feed some yarn or string through each hole. Tie the ends of the string together once they've been fed through each hole. This will allow you to hang your child's artwork anywhere around the house! You can put it in their bedroom, the living room, or another place where the whole family can enjoy it. When you're done displaying this particular work of art, put it in your child's craft box for safe keeping.

With these cheap crafts, your kids can have loads of fun on a rainy day. Crafts don't have to be complicated or expensive. With a little thinking, common household items can quickly and easily be re-purposed into fun art projects. Enjoy!

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