Are you looking to hold on to those winter flurries? This cold season at GBS, we created some user, family, and culture friendly winter crafts. Each craft coincides with winter weather- and can be modified to best fit your learner or family.
This craft is super easy and cost efficient! The materials needed are empty water bottles, black & orange construction paper, googly eyes, construction paper, and cotton balls. The concept is to cover the outside of the bottle with white paper, then glue arms, feet, and a head around the spout of the bottle! Our last step was glueing cotton balls to the bellies of our penguins! The bowling game can be played on a table top due to the size of your penguins and you can make as many or as little as you’d like. The “bowling ball” can be any ball or household item you have handy.
Penguin Alternative – an alternative to this craft, if you don’t want to create a game, is to paint the outside of the water bottle with white paint and maybe some glitter. Then follow the remaining steps. You can use these penguins to decorate the house!
The pasta tree is super fun and incorporates some different materials. For this craft you’ll need some cardboard, or a thicker quality of paper, glue, paint, and pasta! First you want to maneuver your cardboard into a christmas tree shape (cone). A lot of our friends may need help with this step. Then you’ll follow through with gluing the pasta onto the tree in a round formation starting at the bottom and working your way up. Once your glue is dry and your pasta is secure, break out the paint and those paint brushes! You can create and decorate your tree any way you’d like. Tip: we found it easier to cover an upside down plastic cup as our tree. Then we completed the remaining steps!
It is common that everyone has made these one time or another. They’re simple, easy, and fun! All you need is some paper and a pair of scissors. You can also decorate them if you’d like. Below we provided some line configurations to assist in cutting the perfect snowflake- we got our design ideas from onelittleproject.com
This is a favorite for our sensory children! SnowDough is a homemade play-doh with texture to mimic snow. It actually gives off that crunchy feeling that real snow makes! The ingredients for this activity are 2 cups cornstarch, ⅓ cup of vegetable oil, and glitter. You want to mix the cornstarch and oil and then fold in the glitter with your hands. The ratios can be altered according to personal feelings. If your dough feels too dry, add more oil until it’s softer. Remember- keep it a little crumbly like snow!
Snowflakes are so common this time of year so we thought- why not make another type of snowflake! For this activity you can choose to design your snowflakes ANY way you want. All you need is glue and popsicle sticks! Once your glue is dried and your snowflakes are secure, feel free to decorate them with any crafty materials you have at home.
ABA & Winter Crafts
You can incorporate all of the following skills into your holiday craft making!
Each craft will require children to attend to what they’re doing whether it is in regards to listening to directions before beginning, setting up the craft area, or just watching closely as they create their craft to ensure there’s no accidents or spills! How do you know if your child is attending during this time? Encourage them to look at you when you’re speaking to them, and look at their project/what they’re doing when creating!
Piggy backing off of the last skill, it’s always good to incorporate direction following. This will allow your child to have more independence when doing their craft. A good rule of thumb is to have them repeat the directions back to you before they begin. Direction following is also great because it can be used with any child- some of our children may be able to follow a list independently, while others need only 2-step directions, or maybe even full physical prompting! Remember to provide specific praise to your child to let them know that what they did was correct. For example; “Great job grabbing paper towels, Taylor. Next you can sit down and pick up your paint brush.”
Fine Motor Skills
Fine motor skills can be incorporated into a ton of activities! While this skill can be a breeze for some children, it can be extremely difficult for others. Let’s remember to be patient when manipulating small objects for our crafts. Several of the crafts can include fine motor skills such as decorating the pasta tree with beads or some type of smaller object that will act as ornaments. Paper penguin features, glueing popsicle sticks, and maneuvering the paper to cut a snowflake also include fine motor skills. Remember to prompt your child, sometimes verbal praise or motivation is enough- but sometimes they require a little more than that! (And that’s OK!)
This is a very important skill to practice. Not only for crafts but it is a universal life skill! These crafts may require waiting a few minutes for Mom to look for a paint brush, or a few hours for some paint to dry. Talk to your child about an activity to bridge the waiting gap, this will allow for a smooth transition to the next activity while waiting to finish crafts. Another tip is to set up a timer for your child. When they hear the buzzer go off they will know it’s time to finish up!
Being that the penguins were a tabletop bowling game, this would require children to wait their turn if playing with others. However, you can incorporate waiting into the actual craft creation itself if your child is creating with other siblings or peers. They may need the blue marker but someone else is using it at the moment. Encourage them to engage in conversation such as, “Jack, can you pass me the blue marker when you’re done?”