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If you’re like many parents during these unprecedented times, you’ve been thrown into working at home and taking care of your family full-time — all during a very stressful event. Many of us are scrambling to find positive and fun distractions to occupy our little ones. 

Art-making is a therapeutic, fun activity that can immerse your family in projects for hours that all ages will enjoy. Plus art-making materials are all around us! There are so many fun and innovative ways to create using just simple supplies at home. Here are some tips:

#1: KEEP IT SIMPLE.

A few cardboard boxes will do. Gather a variety of recycled materials, scissors and tape and invite your children to build a structure, fort, sculpture or an invention. Fun for hours.

#2: LEAVE IT OPEN-ENDED.

Art-making does not always need to be directed by an adult. Try collecting a variety of materials without a specific outcome in-mind. Children will often come up with the most creative ideas on how to use those materials. What can you collect around the house that your family does not use anymore? Are you going for a walk today? You will be amazed with what a stick or a collection of leaves can become.

#3:  ENCOURAGE CREATIVITY.

Think about ways to encourage creative activity so your family stays engaged over the course of several weeks. Here are some ideas:

  • Select a wall in your house that you can display your family's creations. 
  • Share on social media.
  • Post in your window for neighbors.

#4: FOR THE COMMUNITY.

Challenge your kiddos to think about others during this time. Could you create cards for loved ones? Positive messages on your sidewalk for your neighbors? Signs that support healthcare workers?

#5: EXPERIMENT.

Remember making your own play-dough or experimenting with food coloring when you were a kid? There are so many great tips and tricks out there to make DIY art supplies at home. These are just a few that we found. 

Photos: Kallie Spidahl (1, 2, 4, 5) and Margaret Paxton (4)

By Becca Guyette on