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9 Creative & Easy-to-Do Winter Craft Ideas for Kids

9 Creative & Easy-to-Do Winter Craft Ideas for Kids
Patchwork. Handmade Christmas sewing projects for holidays. Needlework workplace, top view

By Sandra Lee, Coffee in the Middle  

Winter is here, which means we need to get a little more creative when it comes to keeping the kids busy. While we usually get our fair share of holiday-themed crafts from school, this year is a bit different.  Kids love crafts. It brings out their creativity and imagination, develops motor skills, and encourages the opportunity to connect. Luckily, we’ve got some cute winter crafts for toddlers, preschoolers and older kids that are super-duper easy, with minimal support from you.  

Even if you don’t consider yourself a “crafty” person (I’m not crafty much myself), you’ll still be able to pull these off, trust me. These take less than 30 minutes with supplies you probably already have at home (especially if your kiddo has been studying via Zoom school). Ready?  

1. Paper Snow Globes

This is a good one to get started for your child, and then let them do the decorating. It’s always fun to see what they come up with!  

What You’ll Need: 

  • Construction Paper 
  • Glue 
  • Embellishments (stickers, gems, glitter, markers, etc.) 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Cut a circle and trapezoid shape to be the snowglobe and base. This can be done by either your child or you depending on how old and comfortable they are with scissors. 
  2. Glue both onto a piece of colored construction paper to look like a snow globe. 
  3. Let your child decorate the empty snow globe how he/she wants. Let the imagination do its thing.  

2. Pebble Penguins

On nice days that allow some outdoor walks or play, try to stop and collect some smooth rocks to paint. Once you’ve got a few collected, you’ve got a craft project waiting for a cold or rainy winter day. 

What You’ll Need: 

  • Smooth rocks of different shapes and sizes 
  • Paint 
  • Some kind of workspace to do the project and make clean-up easy (newspaper and paper towels work well) 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Lay out the different rocks and paint on newspaper or working area. 
  2. Start painting! First paint a penguin body in black, the tummy in white and then draw the eyes (white circles with a black dot in the middle).  
  3. Add a triangle nose and some feet using orange paint. 
  4. Let it completely dry (ideally overnight). 
  5. Use different size rocks to make a “penguin family”. It’s a fun craft to display on a mantle or even a kid’s room.  
    *Note that colors are totally optional – this is where their creativity shows up. Pink penguin? Great! Rainbow penguin? Awesome! 

3. Snowy Pinecone Owl

This winter owl project is so cute and doesn’t get too messy, with a fairly easy clean-up.  

What You’ll Need: 

  • Pinecones (any size, but the wider the better) 
  • Cotton balls 
  • Felt or construction paper 
  • Glue 
  • Scissors 
  • Googly eyes 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. The first step is pretty fun and an easy one for kids to do. Tear up the cotton balls and stuff them in the little crevices of the pinecone. No glue needed. This gives the owl its “feathers”. 
  2. Make the wings: Cut felt (or construction paper) to make two ovals and glue to each side of the pinecone.  
  3. Make the head and beak: Cut the felt (or construction paper) to make an oval with two triangle shapes on top to be the ears, and another smaller oval shape to be the face. Cut a small triangle shape to make the beak. 
  4. Glue the small oval on top of the bigger oval to make the head and face of the owl. 
  5. Glue googly eyes and then the beak on the small oval and glue that on top of the pinecone. 

*Note that the color is whatever your child wants. Let them pick the construction or felt color and go with it. 

4. Toilet Tube Olaf

We had to include some Frozen-themed crafts for kids, right? This one is great, with a large nose and googly eyes. 

What You’ll Need: 

  • Toilet paper rolls 
  • Glue 
  • Google eyes 
  • Scissors 
  • Black construction paper 
  • Twigs 
  • Black marker 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Wrap white construction (or printer) paper around the toilet paper roll (if it’s not white already).  
  2. Secure with glue. 
  3. Cut black circles for buttons and a long orange triangle for a nose. 
  4. Put everything together! Glue circles for buttons, carrot nose and googly eyes. 
  5. Glue twigs to make the arms and cut little twigs in half to make Olaf’s “hair”. 
  6. Use a black marker to make the mouth and tooth. 

5. Sparkly Snowflakes

These are really pretty strung on yarn or twine and hung over a doorway, around the fireplace, or even on a wall. 

What You’ll Need: 

  • Popsicle sticks 
  • Glue 
  • Sequins, buttons, glitter, gems 
  • Markers 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Color the popsicle sticks in the color of choice. Blue is a good one to start with. 
  2. Glue the sticks to make a snowflake shape: make an “X”, then glue one straight across and then a final one straight down. 
  3. Decorate! Use buttons, gems, glitter, sequins and anything else you have on hand to make those snowflakes sparkle.  
  4. Let it dry completely before hanging or stringing.  

6. Paper Plate Polar Bear

Polar bears are pretty standard for any winter crafts for kids. They are cuddly, cute, and best of all, easy to make. 

What You’ll Need: 

  • Paper plates 
  • Markers 
  • Glue 
  • Scissors 
  • Cotton balls 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Cut one of two paper plates to make the polar bear nose and glue to the other paper plate. 
  2. Use the left-over paper plate to make two half-circle moon shapes for ears and glue them behind the paper plate face. 
  3. Use the marker to draw on a black nose and eyes. 
  4. Glue on the cotton balls until the paper plate is covered, aside from the nose, ears and eyes. 

7. Winter Glitter Jar

Also known as a “calming down” jar from the popular show Esme and Roy, this easy craft can be made for the winter and used all year long.  

What You’ll Need: 

  • Plastic jar or tube with lid (found at most craft stores) that’s easy for little hands to grab 
  • Clear glue 
  • Super glue (for the cap) 
  • Glitter 
  • Measuring cup 
  • Hot water 
  • Food coloring (optional) 
  • Funnel (optional) 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Pour clear glue to fill about ¼ way up the jar or bottle. 
  2. Using a measuring cup or funnel, fill hot water to about the ¾ mark of the container. 
  3. Add as much or as little glitter as you’d like. For a frozen theme, use silver and blue glitter. The options are endless and totally up to the crafter! 
  4. Add 1-2 drop food coloring to the top. 
  5. Stir it all up and pour more hot water on the top. 
  6. Line the inside of the cap with super glue, then twist the cap on tightly and let it dry for a minute or two. 
  7. Shake it up and watch glitter swirl around! 

8. Thumbprint Forest

Perfect art project for preschoolers and toddlers, this craft uses little fingers for leaves and is great to keep little ones busy while you take that phone call or prep dinner. 

What You’ll Need: 

  • Construction paper 
  • Markers 
  • Washable paint 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Draw tree trunks in different sizes on a piece or white or blue construction paper, leaving enough room for “leaves”. 
  2. Have your toddler or preschooler dip their thumbs in washable paint and press to form leaves on the trees. They can use different colors, combine fingerprints or even use their little hands to make shapes.  
  3. Let dry completely and then hang up to display their work of art! 

9. Straw Snowflakes

Maybe it snows, maybe it doesn’t. Either way, kids can still enjoy the magic of making their own unique snowflakes that won’t melt. These can be very elaborate or simple, colorful or plain white. 

What You’ll Need: 

  • Construction paper (any color, but blue or black may work better) 
  • Glue 
  • Straws, plain, clear or colored (plastic or paper both work fine) 
  • Scissors 
  • Round items: pasta wheels, cereal (Kix, Honeycomb, Cheerios, etc.), hard candies (swirled mints, mint Lifesavers, SweeTarts, etc.)  
  • Glitter or glittery nail polish 

What You’ll Do: 

  1. Cut some of the straws into halves and some into thirds. 
  2. Arrange them on the construction paper to form the 6 “spokes” of a snowflake, radiating outward from one round item (look up example designs online or use an ornament).  When you are ready, glue each piece down.  
  3. Use the pasta, cereal and candies to decorate your snowflakes, gluing them down onto the paper at the ends of the straws. 
  4. Paint your snowflakes with glittery paint, colorful nail polish or spread thinly with glue and then sprinkle with glitter.  

No matter what winter craft or art project you decide to do with the little ones, just remember to have fun. It doesn’t have to be perfect or look like the ones on Pinterest or Instagram. It’s all about being creative and using your imagination. If it keeps the kids busy while you do the million other things on that never-ending to-do list, then all the better. Happy winter!  

Sandra Lee

Sandra Lee is a blogger, amateur photographer and freelance writer for parenting publications such as Red Tricycle and Mommy Nearest. Hailing from Texas and living in the Bay Area, she writes about life with two kids, beauty finds, food and all things motherhood on her blog, Coffee in the Middle. As a bilingual Mexican and Italian woman, she’s committed to teaching her kids about diversity, the Spanish language and the love of different cultures. When she’s not chasing the little ones around, she’s either baking up something delicious, taking a yoga class or writing.

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Casey Christiansen

Casey supports the PR team at Zulily.

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