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20 Crafts To Do With Kids Using Recycled Items


ight, school's out, it's cold, and it's raining outside. What to do? Well, with just a little imagination, and some recycled items that you saved from your last house clearance, all is not lost!

There are hundreds of crafts you can do with kids using only recycled items, here are just 20 of them.

1. So one of our old favorites here, NEVER throw away old Christmas cards! It's almost an unwritten rule that these are used to make Christmas gift tags by cutting out pictures, making holes, and attaching wool or thread. The best part is that children absolutely love making these and there are usually plenty to go around! Plus it's cost-effective as you don't have to buy any!

2. Talking about Christmas, there are hundreds of items that can be recycled and used as decorations for the Christmas tree, but some especially good ones are the ones made from leftover food - yes food! Unwanted scraps of pastry can be shaped, baked, and painted, peanuts in shells and popcorn can be threaded together, and tangerines or oranges can be hung after being decorated with cloves. The added bonus is that after Christmas, these can all be composted!

3. Don't forget that if you buy a Christmas tree with roots still attached to it, if you keep them fed and watered, (the children can be responsible for this!) you can move your tree outside and bring it back in to use for the following year!

4. Last Christmas idea! Remember to keep all of those unwanted cardboard tubes to make Christmas crackers with, fill them with sweets and let the children also make their own jokes up to put inside!

5. Another obvious one is to always have a dressing up box stored away, full of unwanted items of clothing. Great fun turning them into costumes of one sort or another, a firm favorite with children of most ages!

6. On the subject of unwanted items of clothing, don't forget those old socks that can be made into hand puppets, you can make all sorts of characters out of them, just remember to wash them first!

7. Still on the material side of things, don't forget to hang on to old sheets/tablecloths/curtains. They can easily become ghost costumes if white, oceans on the floor if blue, or kings and queens robes!

8. Don't throw away large cardboard boxes! They have various uses, including being recycled into television screens for your children to sit behind and become newsreaders, or becoming theatres for those sock puppets to perform in!

9. Babies old plastic bathtubs make wonderful pretend boats, great for pirate adventures!

10. Unwanted potatoes? Cut them in half and carve out shapes. Paint and use for printing!

11. Always keep old magazines and comics. Use these to cut out pictures and encourage the children to make their own books and comics (Using recycled paper of course!)

12. Empty cans should never be thrown away as they can make great robot models!

13. Use the same principle for empty plastic bottles, never throw them away! Re-fill with uncooked rice and pulses to make musical shakers!

14. Make a memory scrapbook using old restaurant bills, public transport tickets, local coins, luggage labels, local stamps, pressed flowers, the list goes on!

15. Use old uncooked pasta to make necklaces and bracelets.

16. Faces can drawn and colored onto paper plates and used as masks once threaded.

17. Old newspapers can be recycled into making papiér maché, ideal for making models and masks.

18. Give each child an empty matchbox and challenge them to fit in as many objects as they possibly can, this should keep them busy for a while and the results can be quite surprising!

19. Never throw buttons away! Use these for making necklaces and bracelets, and also for using as eyes on those sock puppets !

20. Use painted and decorated empty tin cans to make bowling pins, use a ball of wool as the ball! .

I hope that just these 20 ideas will help not only to keep your children entertained, but also help to teach them just how much fun recycling can be! Next time you have a house clearance, be careful what you throw away!

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