Summer Arts and Crafts Ideas

With summer in full swing …and the intense heat we have here in AZ ..what are you doing to keep Art alive with your kids?!  Share some ideas with us and show us what you and your kids are creating!
Here is a fun idea and great way to recycle & reuse. Get creative and use various molds to make fun crayon shapes.

Think of all the possibilities … give it a try and share your comments and pictures with us. We’d love to see what the kids are creating.

Recycled Chunky Crayons

by MARIE on SEPTEMBER 3, 2007

I know you have some crayons that are short, stubby, paper gone or in shreds. Perfect crayons don’t last long. I have a solution for all of those left over and unwanted stubby crayons. Here’s my version of how to make a new Recycled Chunky Crayon!

Get out your old crayons. Take off the paper (if it is still on) and break them up into smaller pieces (kids love to help with this.)


Spray your muffin tin (below is a mini muffin tin) with vegetable spray and pour some crayons into each spot. The more or less you put depends on what size you want for each chunky crayon. You can also group the crayons into colors that are fun together, red and blue for purple, pink tones or blue tones.


Place the muffin tin full of crayons into a preheated oven of 275 degrees F. I used both mini muffin tins and large muffin tins. Watch them carefully, they will melt fast. Bake them for about 7-8 minutes. When they look melted enough, carefully and slowly remove them from the oven. You can stir them with a toothpick for a swirly look, or leave them as is. Let them cool completely (can be placed in the freezer to speed up process once the tin is not so hot.)


Once cooled, the crayons can be popped out of the muffin tin, tap the back to help this process. Then get the paper out and your ready to color.

Here is another great idea …this one is geared towards the Tweenie Teens in your home …

Magazine Bead Bracelet

Magazine Bead Bracelet
Total Time afternoon or evening
Ages tween

Recycle old catalogs and magazines into stretchy, swanky bracelets that cost next to nothing to make.

What you’ll need

  • Cardboard
  • Ruler
  • Old catalogs and magazines
  • Wooden skewers
  • Glue stick
  • Mod Podge Sparkle
  • Paintbrush
  • 6 feet of clear elastic cord

How to make it

  1. Cut out a cardboard triangle with a 1-inch base that is 6 inches high. Use it as a template to cut 30 to 35 triangles from colorful magazine and catalog pages.
  2. To make a bead, tightly roll one triangle (base to point) around a skewer, then glue down its tip. Leave the bead on the skewer and roll the next one beside it. When the skewer is full and the beads are dry, slide them off of the stick. Brush on a thin layer of Mod Podge Sparkle and let the beads dry.
  3. To assemble the bracelet, thread one bead onto the center of the cord. Add the next bead, as shown, threading one end of the elastic through each end of the bead. Pull the elastic tight. Continue adding beads in this way, tightening and straightening them as you go, until the bracelet is long enough to stretch around your child’s wrist. Feed the remaining lengths of elastic back through the first bead, then knot them multiple times and trim.

Did you go on a fun vacation this summer …

take a look at this…

Vacation Memory Jars

Martha Stewart Kids, Volume 4 2002

You can keep vacation memories a little stronger a little longer with vacation memory jars. Filled with souvenirs collected on trips and pictures developed afterward, they are like little worlds that can be visited again and again. Kids can also add to them or rearrange them anytime they like. Bent wire can be used to lower and position objects in a thin-necked jar.

Yarn Laced Note Cards

Yarn Laced Note Cards


In an increasingly digital world, there’s just something nice about a good old fashioned card. These note cards are inspired by lacing cards. So not only will your child strengthen his/her fine motor skills making these, they’ll score bonus points in the creativity and etiquette categories too. Make a bunch to send to the grandparents, use for teacher appreciation notes or contemporary style birthday cards. They’re completely customizable—no two have to look the same!


What you’ll need

  • blank cards
  • hole punch or awl
  • length of yarn
  • tape

How to make it

  1. Use a hole punch or awl to punch holes around the card.Next, wrap a a bit of tape around one end of the yarn. You’ll want it stiff but not bulky. This will act as a needle.Knot the other end of the yarn.
  2. Now, have your child ‘sew.’ He or she can make any pattern they like.When he or she is finished, knot the end of yarn and trim.
  3. All that’s left is to write a note! 

Home Made Play-Dough!

It’s almost like making tortillas in Abuelita’s kitchen … and instead  of cooking it and making it into a tortilla she would give us the masa, “dough” to play with  … Play- Dough!


We made some homemade play dough the other day and my five-year-old made this cheery picture. Here’s the recipe we used:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • food coloring

Mix together. Cook over medium heat until it reaches the consistency of dough. I tried to make this before and it didn’t turn out because I didn’t realize that you really do have to cook it. Let it cool and knead it. You may need to knead in a bit more oil. You could use natural food coloring. I think it would also be nice to add a few drops of essential oil.