The festive season is a magical time for children, filled with wonder and excitement. Christmas, in particular, is a time when families come together to celebrate and create cherished memories. One of the best ways to make the festive season special for kids is by engaging in fun and educational activities that stimulate their creativity and create some beautiful, easy Christmas keepsakes.
In this blog post, I’ll share with you six of my favourite Christmas activities for toddlers and children alike! These crafts and activities are not only a great way to bond but also help kids develop important skills while fostering a love for the holiday season.
Activity 1 - Handprint Christmas Tree
This activity helps to develop: Fine motor skills, creativity, and colour recognition.
Creating a ‘Handprint Christmas Tree’ is a fantastic way for toddlers and children to express their artistic talents while developing fine motor skills. Fine motor skills are essential for tasks like writing, buttoning clothes, and using utensils, making this craft a fun way to practice. Moreover, the vibrant colours used in this activity will help children recognise different shades and improve their colour recognition abilities.
- Green and brown non-toxic paint
- A paintbrush
- White paper
How to Make It:
- Start by painting your child’s hand with green paint and gently press it onto the paper, forming the tree’s branches. You may need to assist younger children with this step.
- Use brown paint to add a tree trunk.
- Once dry, let your child decorate the tree with colourful fingerprint ornaments, which further enhances their fine motor skills.
- Display this masterpiece proudly as holiday decoration or even turn it into personalised Christmas cards for friends and family. You could also include a printable poem inside the card or write your own! It is the perfect toddler Christmas gift for friends and family!
Activity 2: Gingerbread Man Christmas Decorations
Skills Developed: Fine motor skills, creativity, and imagination.
Gingerbread Man Ornaments are a sweet and creative project for kids that allow them to explore their imagination and artistic skills. Fine motor skills play a crucial role in creating the intricate details on these ornaments, like the facial features and clothing. Additionally, toddlers and preschoolers will love the creative process encourages imaginative play, which can boost creativity and problem-solving abilities.
- Gingerbread-shaped cookie cutters
- Air-dry clay (you can get this at places like Hobbycraft or The Range)
- Acrylic paints
- Colourful ribbons
How to Make It:
- Roll out the air-dry clay and use the gingerbread cookie cutter to create shapes. This step engages fine motor skills as children manipulate the clay.
- Let your child design their gingerbread characters with paints and small decorations, promoting creativity and imagination. You could add thin strips of clay on top to create 3D patterns or use tools like a fork to press patterns into the clay.
- Make sure to pierce a hole in the top of your ornament using a cocktail stick so you have somewhere to hang your ribbon.
- Once dry, paint your decoration.
- Finally, thread a ribbon through the top and hang them on the Christmas tree as the perfect Christmas ornaments.
As an alternative, you could use air drying salt dough or play dough to create ornament shapes.
Activity 3: Toilet Roll Santa
Skills Developed: Problem-solving, creativity, and imagination.
Building a Santa is a fantastic project that encourages imaginative play and problem-solving. This craft encourages kids to use their imagination to create stories and scenarios, which is vital for their cognitive development. Additionally, the problem-solving aspect of designing a Santa fosters critical thinking skills.
- Cardboard toilet roll tubes
- Coloured paper
- Toy Santa figurine or picture
How to Make It:
- Help your to examine the Santa pictures or figures. Look at the colours of the clothes, belt, shoes etc.
- Now, use paints to outline your toilet roll in red, leaving a space for the face and beard.
- Use the paper to create a hat which you can stick on the top of your toilet roll to make it appear 3D.
- Add boots and a belt with black paint.
- You could use other bits of paper, felt or tissue paper to create 3D effects. For example, scrunching white tissue paper to make a 3D beard.
- Finally, make a whole family of toilet roll people with a reindeer, Mrs Claus, gingerbread man, elf and more! You could use them to play with a Christmas sensory bin for a Christmas sensory play, create a puppet show or use a sheet of green material to create a felt Christmas tree and stick it onto the toilet roll.
Activity 4: Paper Plate Reindeer
Skills Developed: Fine motor skills, creativity, and colour recognition.
Crafting Paper Plate Reindeer is the perfect toddler activity. Fine motor skills are put to good use as children cut, glue, and assemble the components of the reindeer. Additionally, as they add features like googly eyes and a red pom-pom, they further develop their fine motor skills and colour recognition.
- Paper plates
- Brown paint
- Googly eyes
- Red pom-poms
- Brown construction paper
How to Make It:
- Paint the paper plate brown and let it dry, encouraging fine motor skills through painting.
- Attach googly eyes and a red pom-pom for the reindeer’s nose, enhancing fine motor skills and colour recognition.
- Cut out antlers from the brown construction paper and glue them onto the plate.
- These cute reindeer can be hung as decorations or used for creative play, encouraging imaginative storytelling.
Once you have made a reindeer, you could make a snowman by attaching three plates together, make a wreath by cutting the middle out of your plate and decorating the outside in green or creating a pine cone by cutting your paper plate into a pine cone shape.
Activity 5: Decorate Your Own Stocking
Skills Developed: Creativity, fine motor skills, and colour recognition.
Designing your own Christmas stocking is a fun activity that allows children to personalise their holiday decoration, fostering creativity and fine motor skills. Choosing colours, patterns, and decorations for the stockings enhances colour recognition, and the application of fabric markers and paints requires careful attention to detail and fine motor skills.
- Plain stockings (you could even use old socks to create one)
- Fabric markers
- Fabric paint
- Glitter glue
- Small beads, sequins, and decorations
How to Make It:
- Let your child use fabric markers and paint to create unique designs on the stocking, stimulating creativity and fine motor skills.
- Add glitter glue or sew on colourful beads and sequins for extra sparkle and creativity.
- Once dry, hang the stockings by the fireplace or in your child’s room to await Santa’s visit.
- These stockings become a special part of the holiday tradition and can even serve as gift holders for small presents for friends and family.
Craft 6: Salt Dough Sculptures
Skills Developed: Fine motor skills, creativity, and sensory exploration.
While clay makes the perfect base for hanging ornaments, you might want to make something a bit more 3D, such as a Santa sculpture or standing Christmas tree. Salt Dough is the perfect sensory delight for children and offers a multi-sensory learning experience. As children mix, roll, cut, and decorate their creations, they engage their fine motor skills and foster creativity. The tactile nature of this craft also promotes sensory exploration, which is essential for young children’s development. This Christmas craft for toddlers is certainly not to be missed!
- 1 cup of salt
- 2 cups of flour
- 1 cup of water
- Cookie cutters
- Acrylic paints
How to Make It:
- Mix 1 cup of salt, 2 cups of flour, and 1 cup of water to create the dough. Children can enjoy sensory exploration while kneading the dough. If your dough is a little too wet, simply add a spoon more of flour. If it is too dry, add a small drop of water.
- If you are making flat ornaments, roll out the dough and use cookie cutters to shape them, however if you are making a 3D sculpture, mould the dough into whatever shape you desire. You could use ornaments you already have such as a toy Santa or Christmas Tree to model your creation on.
- You can leave your salt dough to air dry, although my top tip is to place your dough on a heat safe surface and place on top of the radiator in your home as the heat throughout the day will gently dry out the dough.
- Let your child decorate them with paint, further stimulating creativity.
Well, there you have it – 6 wonderful, easy toddler Christmas activities which your little ones will love! Crafting with toddlers is a delightful way to get spend some fun Christmas time at home!
The festive season offers a wonderful opportunity to engage in delightful Christmas crafts and activities for toddlers. These easy and simple Christmas crafts and activities for toddlers can be enjoyed from the comfort of your home. They are a perfect way to bond with your little ones and create lasting memories. From easy Christmas ornament crafts to nice and simple Christmas stocking decorations, these home-based activities are both fun and educational. So, whether you’re looking for easy Christmas crafts for toddlers or simple Christmas crafts and activities for toddlers, this article has provided you with a delightful selection to make your holiday season truly special. Happy crafting, and may your home be filled with the joy and creativity of these wonderful Christmas activities!
Don’t forget, that we have plenty of printable craft activities inside The Little Learning Hub too!