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Are you struggling to think of new and creative activities to do with the kids? Since it’s the perfect time for spring cleaning, instead of throwing unused items out, get creative and turn them into a DIY project for the whole family. An item you may deem useless can actually lend itself to some fun and crafty projects. Here are a few ideas for a DIY afternoon with the family.
Empty Plastic Bottles
Typically, one would toss their empty plastic bottles into the recycling bin without a second thought, but they do come in handy for multiple crafts and projects. Here are a few to choose from.
Plastic Bottle Sprinkler
The weather is getting warmer, so why not make a sprinkler out of your plastic bottle? You simply need to poke some holes around the body of the bottle, attach it to your hose with plumbers tape, and turn on the faucet. Voilà – your kids get to play and your plants get a drink.
Create a Vertical Garden
Living in Chicago, you may not have much outdoor garden space, but a good way to get around that is to create a vertical garden on your balcony. Gather together your sturdy plastic bottles (pop bottles work best), and cut a rectangular hole on each side large enough to fill with soil and seedlings. You’ll also need to poke holes an inch to the right and left of the rectangular opening, making sure the holes go all the way through to insert your string. You can string multiple bottles together by simply tying a knot at the bottom of each one and stringing another on. Make sure to leave enough distance between them to allow for the maximum height of the plant. Then, just hang them onto the wall and water as needed.
Toilet Paper Rolls
Toilet paper rolls are usually just tossed in the trash without a second thought, but little did you know you were tossing craft supplies away. Here are a few fun ideas you and the family can try out:
Geometric Art Piece
A fun way to recycle and create a fun DIY piece is to create a geometrical art piece. This is a simple, fun, and creative project that requires scissors, glue, toilet paper rolls, and just a bit of imagination from you and the kids. Cut the roll into several circular pieces, you can crease them on each end to make a petal type shape or keep them in the circular shape. Glue the pieces together to create the look you’re going for. If you want to display it as a wall hanging or a wreath, throw some spray paint in the mix for a polished finish.
Now that spring has arrived, the birds are back in town. Toilet paper rolls can be used to make a quick and easy bird feeder simply by slathering them with peanut butter, rolling them in birdseed and adding a piece of string to hang them from a tree branch. Add some bird watching fun to your agenda for the day.
Toilet paper rolls are perfect for making finger puppets. If your children are younger, you may want to cut them down and glue them a bit tighter for more of a snug fit. Use old fabric to create outfits for the puppets and use markers or paints to create their faces.
Tin cans come in all sizes and can be used for many different things. Repurpose your cans from cat food to canned corn and create some great organizational and decorative projects.
This project works best with smaller cans such as tuna fish or wet cat food cans. Assemble wooden clothespins around the edges to create an organic look, fill the can one third of the way with sand, and add a tea light for a perfect candleholder.
Office or Art Center Organizers
Paint your tin cans with the colors of your choice and then paint a rectangle on the front with chalkboard paint. Once dry, label the cans as necessary – for example, pens, markers, crayons, pencils, etc.
Paint your tin cans and a piece of plywood with the colors or designs of your choice. Fasten the cans to the plywood using a hot glue gun. Insert your magazines into the cans and you now have your own homemade magazine rack.
Coming up with DIY projects for the family doesn’t have to be expensive or technical: simply raid the recycle bin and let your imagination and creativity run wild. What are some of your favorite craft time projects to do with your kids?