Sand is not just for beaches, it’s also a great ingredient in lots of exciting kids crafts! Use it for modelling or with paint and other materials to create some fantastic effects.
Make sure the sand you use for sandcraft is suitable for kids crafts. It’s easy to find play sand in most good toy or craft outlets, be careful to avoid sand from DIY stores that may be specifically for building purposes. Building sand often has properties that make it stain clothes and skin.
Another important consideration is the safety risks of sandcraft. If sand is stored outdoors, it’s really important to ensure that it’s properly covered and kept hygienic at all times. Sand is very attractive to lots of animals, which brings obvious health risks.
Remind kids that throwing sand is very dangerous. If it gets into eyes, it’s painful and needs to be rinsed away with clean water immediately to prevent damage to the eye.
Pictures with Sand
Kids can create wonderful pictures with sand. They paint their design with PVA glue and finish the picture by lightly sprinkling sand over the paper. Tap the paper to remove the excess and a very simple but effective picture is revealed. Kids can draw outlines as guides if they wish.
Another way to add sandy interest to a picture is by giving paint texture. Mix a small amount of sand into the paint pot. This is particularly good if kids are creating beach or holiday pictures. This technique is also a very good background for textured collages.
Sand pictures are really special if you use the rainbow of coloured sands that are available. Build up the picture by adding single colours at a time.
If you want to colour the sand at home, it’s much cheaper and also a good craft activity.
- Only colour a small amount of sand in one session
- Place in a small pot and just about cover the sand with water
- Add a few drops of food colouring
- Stir to mix and leave for about 10- 15 minutes
- Drain the sand and spread onto paper towel
- Allow to dry thoroughly
The Wonderful World of Sand
Kids can create some lovely ‘temporary’ craft displays with sand. Pre-schoolers in particular love to make their own beach. Use a shallow baking tin as the base. Crumple up some blue tissue paper for the sea and add lots of sand in the other half of the tray to make the beach.
Kids can use their new beach as a lovely showcase for things they have collected on beaches like shells and pebbles. They can also add green tissue seaweed and maybe hand-crafted fish or sea-creatures. Lots of different types of kids crafts could be tried to add to the new beach scene.
Similar displays could be achieved in sandpits or washing up bowls. With a few plastic moulds and tubs, kids can create imaginary towns for their toys and cars complete with bridges, ponds, tunnels and houses.
A Simple Craft with Coloured Sand
The most effective kids crafts are always the simplest. Find a small jar and make sure you have a selection of different coloured sands to hand. Get the kids to gently fill the jar with layers of the coloured sand. They can add interest with small shells and pebbles or even a few sparkly glass beads. Secure the lid tightly. Kids may want to decorate the jar with stickers too. Now they have created a lovely paperweight or ornament.
Sand always seems to draw children irresistibly towards it and provides endless hours of fun. It’s wonderful to use it in a whole variety of kids crafts. Challenge your kids to produce really different art effects or lovely 3D models.