Use the first initials of family members to create these DIY kid-made Christmas ornaments with beads and jewellery wire.
They’ll ensure that everybody is repped on the tree this festive season.
This is one of those projects that requires minimum materials but leads to some maximum engagement.
You will need:
A variety of beads
Jewellery wire or pipe cleaners
How to create your own beaded kid-made Christmas ornaments:
Bend your jewellery wire into the shape of the letter that you want.
This can take some experimentation based on the letter that you are making. Some letters with sharp points are easier to shape AFTER you’ve strung all the beads on.
If you don’t have jewellery wire, pipecleaners work just as well.
Twist one end of your letter to create a “stopper” to prevent beads from sliding off.
Bring out the beads and bead, bead, bead away. We also introduced threadable pom poms and fabric scraps. The fabric scraps had slits cut in the middle.
My 2 younger ones lost interest in the beading after 2.4 seconds, so I modified the activity for them. I cut their initials out of a cardboard box, let them go to town with watercolour paints and markers and they still get their place on the tree.
My eldest spent a whole morning creating personalised Christmas ornaments for various family members.
Once the beading is completed, twist the end of the wire or pipe cleaner to keep all beads in place.
Add a ribbon and your kid-made Christmas ornament is now ready to hang on the tree.
INCOMING TEACHER TIP:
Names are a perfect place to start getting young readers and writers excited about alla the letters.
As you talk about the names of family members, point out how a name starts with a CAPITAL but is followed by lower case letters.
Most of us Kindy teachers inwardly groan when an incoming student proclaims “I CAN WRITE MY NAME!” And then we watch as they spell their name ALL IN CAPS. It is our job to then unteach this.
We get it. Capitals are much easier to write on the letter formation front. But model it correctly from the start and save time later down the track.
(Spoiler: If you’re her mate, you’re getting one for Christmas. She has a necklace-making factory in operation.) As we’ve been making batch after batch, we thought they’d be fun Christmas ornaments for kids to make.)
Presenting kid-made Christmas ornaments from glue and paper straws!
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You will need:
Non-toxic craft glue/ PVA glue
Paper straws, cut into smaller lengths
Plastic paint palette
Sequins and sparkly things
These Christmas ornaments are awesome for learning about patience and trial and error. The ornaments take about a week to dry- so unfortunately this isn’t any good as a last-minute project.
Squeeze about .5cm of craft glue into a circular mould. Each circle of our paint palette measures about 7cm in diameter.
You could also experiment with a muffin tin that you are happy to sacrifice for crafty purposes. I’ve never tried this project with a muffin tin, but I suspect it could work.
Let the decorating begin!
Add your paper straws. We created abstract designs. We arranged stars in ascending length to create Christmas trees. You might like to sprinkle sequins and stars into the glue- be sure that they are embedded in well. With some of the ornaments, we squeezed some gold paint on top of our designs. (IKEA Mala paint is our top choice here.)
I am a glitter grinch. My 5-year-old of course thinks it is the best substance known to Humankind. I relented and bought some glitter glue. (Surely if the glitter is in the glue, it can’t spread everywhere?!)
We experimented with using the white craft glue as a base and decorating over the top with the red glitter glue. This wasn’t so succesful. We also experimented with using the red glitter glue solely as a base. It did work, but the discs were more flimsy than the white craft glue.
Trial and error and patience
This is where the trial and error part of the project comes into play.
We generally subscribe to the philosophy of “more is more” here for craft projects.
Miss 5 learnt that this philosophy didn’t really lead to success for this project.
Too many decorations mean that the glue can’t dry underneath. So decorate sparingly.
Set your palettes aside to dry on a flat surface. This is the hard part. Now you must wait.
How will you know when the Christmas ornaments are dry enough?
Lightly touch the centre of the circle and then the edge. Obviously no glue will come away if it’s dry. Another sign is that your ornaments should pull ever-so-slightly away from the edge of the circular mould.
This next step is one for adults to do
Run a sharp knife around the edge of your pendant to loosen it.
Gently peel the pendant away from the mould. Depending on how many decorations you’ve embedded into the glue, you may need to use a knife to loosen the centre of the ornament from the mould.
Ready to hang!
Use a skewer to poke a hole through the ornament. String some yarn through the hole . You might like to add beads. Tie a knot and your kid-made Christmas ornament is ready to hang on the tree!