For many of us, the holiday season is a wonderful time to whip up your favorite family recipes and sweet treats. Many children love to join in the fun by either helping with specific activities (like measuring or mixing), or emulating you with their own play food. If you’re looking for a “less mess” activity with your child, here are 4 quick sensory crafts for kids to enjoy during the holidays (and all year-round!) Use our Cookie Printable as a starting point, and play away!
1) Scratch N’ Sniff
For the aroma of freshly baked cookies (without the flour-covered counters), “decorate” your cookie printable with some sweet-smelling toppings! In little bowls, sprinkle small amounts of the following:
– Crushed candy canes (older kids can help break them apart using rolling pins)
– Colored sugar sprinkles
Then, have your child use a non-roll glue stick to coat each cookie, one-at-a-time (for little helpers, you may want to help with this step. Cover the cookies with their choice of toppings, and you have some sweet treats that are almost good enough to eat.
2) DIY “Sprinkles”
Earlier this year, our Blog Ambassador, Val shared some great ideas for making Chalk Cloud Dough. Here, you can apply to same idea by adding a few colored chalk sticks to a plastic bag (or separate colors in separate bags for a little color identification practice!) Have your child use a rolling pin to crush up into small pieces and “sprinkle” on your cookies!
3) Cut & Color
Ask your child to color each of the “cookie” designs however they would like! Use this as a time to sneak in a little learning by exploring some questions related to the “cookies”, like “where do snowflakes come from” or “how many arms and legs does the Gingerbread person have?” Then, using child-safe scissors, have your child cut out each of the cookies (you may need to assist younger kids) to strengthen fine motor skills, as well.
4) Decoration Station
Now is a great time to clean-out that arts & crafts cabinet, so gather up your favorite little decorations and create a cookie decorating station! Replicate what you would be doing during a “real” baking activity by having kids throw on aprons and gather around the kitchen counter, or table. Have them cut-out their cookies and arrange them on cookie sheets. Then, set out your “decorations”. Little bowls full of stickers, hole-punched paper “sprinkles”, fuzzy pom-poms, beads, and whatever else you find in your bins will lead to endless decorating possibilities for your child. Let their imagination run wild, and don’t be afraid to make a mess along the way (because, after all, that’s the best part about baking, isn’t it?)
Do you have any fun ideas to add to our list? Share them on Facebook, or e-mail us at socialmedia@MelissaAndDoug.com!
Don’t forget to download our free printable for kids here.