Let the kids create outdoor crafts and explore while you enjoy the outdoors!
I don’t know about you, but I have a TON of clean up to do with spring finally here!
That means it’s a little harder to be fully engaged with my toddler while I’m trying to weed, get grass out of gardens, resow grass, plant new seeds… if you’re a gardener, you know the feeling!
I also am really trying to soak up the sun! I love getting a magazine and reading it with some coffee on my porch.
Keeping my toddler from ripping my magazine down, or screaming like a crazy guy?
That’s what I wanted to tackle!
I’ve made a go to list of easy crafts that can be done with things you probably already have in your home – tape, string of some sort, empty containers, as well as any “fun” things to make it colorful! I also used paint, pipe cleaners, and googly eyes!
So next time you’re trying to relax or get something done in your yard, get some tape and keep them busy!
P.S. If you love outdoor crafts like this, you may want to open up this guy in another tab! It’s my dandelion special, and it includes a free 6 page printable of all dandelion crafts!
Thread a Nature Bracelet
While you can use string, I love things that are colorful and had my guy used a pipe cleaner. The pokey end makes it way easier to thread through the leaves.
Make a STICKY Nature Bracelet
This is super easy for the kiddos who don’t feel like going through the effort of the threading bracelet! Tell them to go find things they like and stick it on their bracelet! The good news is, the tape is often so sticky that it will hold everything. So over time, things may fall off, which will require more exploring to find fun additions!
Decorate a walking stick!
My son is a big stick fan, mostly because it’s the only thing he’s allowed to hit with outside (as long as it’s the ground, big trees etc). So he got super excited when we got to customize “his” stick. This is another one that, while the paint and extra color aren’t necessary, if you have it the process is even more fun!
Create a stick loom
Fair warning, unless your toddler is a little older, he or she may need help actually putting the stick loom together. After that though, ask them to try and fill it with things they like! They really enjoy trying to find a way to make their items stay between the strings. If you have an older toddler, you could let them do the string part (Once the frame is made) so they can learn through experimentation what works and what doesn’t!
Make Nature Garland
I LOVE making these! Whenever we go camping, I make one and hang it around our camper somewhere. This translates well to the yard too. I only have small things like leaves and such in this picture, but encourage them to find anything! They may need help tying it, but the idea of this craft is to be able to say “Great find! Now go find something different so that we can tie it to your garland!” and send them off on an adventure to find something new!
Use leaves and sticks to create a nature paintbrush
Both for fun, or in a pinch if you forgot or don’t have a paintbrush! With a little tape and a small stick, help your toddler explore how different textures and shapes create different patterns! We even ended up using rocks sometimes because they had cool shapes!
Make a Sticky Wall to display their find!
This is a good way to make your toddler have a home base so that you can keep an eye on them! I stick the tape to my porch, so that I can watch him from inside the house, or if we’re camping, somewhere near the door of the camper! Encourage your explorer to do a certain task, IE “Put only green things on this strip of tape, and brown things on the other” to encourage organizational and color identifying skills!
Decorate some leaves!
This is a favorite, mainly because my guy loves to put “googy eyes” (googley eyes) on everything! This is one of the crafts that doesn’t need much (You can use a marker if you don’t want to deal with/ don’t have paint) but since I do have a couple extra fun things, love to include them whenever possible!
Use things from around the house to create cool shapes!
This really opens up their mind to think outside the box. Empty toilet paper roll? A circle maker! Bottom of a disposable water bottle? Flower maker! Empty Mac ‘ N Cheese box? Rectangle Maker! To make them feel excited about it, ask them to grab a couple things they want to put paint on. If you want to skip a battle though, have a box or area where you put these kinds of reusable things, and ask them to pick a few out to use!
“Camouflage” a telescope!
Perfect for the little adventurer who loves tape!! I just wrapped some tape around a TP roll, and told him to cover all the tape with things from outside! For the particular one in this pic, I actually had my little babies crush up some leaves in a sensory bag, then I poured it out on the ground and he got to roll it all up!
Ready to craft with your toddlers and enjoy some fresh air?
It’s awesome to get kids excited about nature, and crafts that involve nature itself are a great way to encourage a love for it!
I also hope these easy toddler crafts encourage you to get outside, even if all you have is tape and some string. Kids have BIG imaginations, let them use it!
P.S. if you want to craft on the go, check out my “Camp Craft Kit“ (and camping craft ideas) that I bring every time we camp!
Other Reads You Might be Interested In!
- Have fun learning in the sandbox with this name practice “treasure hunt” game!
- Another fun outdoor activity is “sensory soup” complete with free printable recipe cards!
- Awesome toddler sensory exploration and creativity craft with play doh and nature HERE!
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- Fun and Engaging Printable Kids Camping Journal [25 Pages + Free PDFs] - September 22, 2020
- Fun + Engaging Printable Hiking Journal for Kids [FREE printable hike logs!] - September 21, 2020