Before we completely say goodbye to March, let’s be sure to send this special month off in style! After all, it is not only National Women’s History Month; it also happens to be National Reading Month and National Crafting Month. What better way to combine both celebrations than by a bookmark craft or two?
Admittedly, craft time can make even the most patient parents become unglued. That is why it is essential for us Smarty Mamas to heed wise advice prior to setting out, so boldly (and foolishly) armed with googly eyes and washi tape. Perhaps then, we parents can even have some fun throughout the process, too. Here are some of my favorite tips for crafting with kids from DecoArt.
– Have a designated area for craft time.
– Don’t go overboard on the supplies.
– Don’t have time limits.
– Try not to be a helicopter mom.
I was recently reminded of how enjoyable crafting can be. After every ten literacy lessons, we Augustine Literacy Project tutors get to reward our hard-working students with a game day. My student and I decided to create two types of bookmarks for this special occasion.
Crafting goes well beyond just being a fun hobby. “When the kitchen table becomes Craft Central, you may not realize that your child is developing lifelong skills underneath all the paint and glitter,” says Brittany Leddy of Klutz craft kits in a Scholastic article. Leddy highlights these key potential benefits:
– Develops fine motor skills
– Boosts counting and pattern recognition
– Teaches shapes and colors
– Encourages critical thinking
– Builds resilience
– Supports reluctant readers
– Supports self-esteem
– Encourages a creative mindset
– Develops patience
The first bookmark craft is easy enough for the tiniest of hands to try and is complete in just three steps (no instructional video or website needed):
1. Select a large popsicle stick.
2. Decorate the stick however desired. For instance, you can write or draw objects you enjoy on it with markers or color it in an abstract way with paint.
3. Hot glue on googly eyes. Done.
The second bookmark craft – which you can find directions for how to do in the link – involves beginner-level origami skills and is a nice challenge for older children. Origami itself offers even more benefits for children, including the ability to teach them mindfulness according to a Psychology Today article.
Try whichever craft you prefer or both. Just remember to put those bookmarks to good use, and read!