To go along with the release of my book in May, I’m trying to come up with something cool kids can do at book events.
So I started testing out an idea on Emme and her friend.
It definitely didn’t yield the results I expected, but it was no less fun for the kids. I was surprised at where they took the project, actually.
Still, I think the idea needs refining, and I’d love some input.
Here’s the deal.
Dad’s Book of Awesome Projects comes out in May, and I want to create a fun craft that kids can do at book events.
Normally at book events, there’s some wine, some food, a microphone, a boozy introduction and a reading you keep wondering whether will ever end. (I’ve given said readings. Fun times!)
With a family crafting book at the heart of the event and many families with young kids expected, I’m expecting fewer readings and a lot more wine.
I’m also expecting some serious craft time.
Ideally, I want to hand out craft bags to any visiting kids, but what, exactly, to put in the bags?
I can’t stand those ready-made “crafts” you can find at Target or Joanne Fabrics — those little foamish things you open and assemble into a finished craft in 5 seconds before moving on. With those, there’s only one thing you can do, one direction you’re supposed to go. That’s not crafty or imaginative.
For these craft bags, I want them to be very open-ended. The sky’s the limit. You don’t have to create one thing and there are no correct answers.
And yet … it would be cool if they could create something.
When Emme hosted a playdate the other day, I wrapped up some crafting items in a bag and made the bag look like a present.
They were so excited to open them.
Here’s what was inside:
Butcher’s twine, tape, popsicle sticks, pipe cleaners, screws, nails, dowels, glue, you name it.
When all these materials came tumbling out, they asked: “What do you we do with all this?”
I shrugged and said I had no idea.
Then I left the room.
I expected them to just create something separately, using each bag to make something different. Instead, they pooled their resources, crafted the weirdest looking turtle I have ever seen and then, a half hour later, came back with a crafty “habitat” for the turtle as well. They spent more than an hour playing with their turtle and populating its home with weird-looking friends.
Seriously, I expected them to make a building or a plane or something, I don’t know, different. But they had fun conjuring up their own world. Pretty cool.
But that said … I wondered if I put too many materials in the bag, or not enough. If it was too open ended.
If you were creating craft bags, what would you put in them? Keep in mind, you’ll have to create hundreds of them, so the materials can’t be too expensive, and yet, at the same time, they can’t suck.
What would be inside your craft bag?
I’ll be posting this over at my new Facebook site as well.