Halloween: Hand and Footprint Crafts

Having worked professionally with children for over a decade, I have lots of tried and true projects that I’ve been doing with kiddos year after year. A favorite of mine is hand and footprint projects. These make a wonderful keepsake and are fun to repeat each year to see how much your little one has grown! Scroll down to see some Halloween projects I have done throughout the years! We would love to see what you creat – don’t forget to tag us on IG @crafternoonplaydate, follow us on Facebook or comment below to share pictures of your spooky crafts!

 

Craft/Activity/Snack: Halloween themed hand and footprint crafts
Objective: Using your child’s hand or foot, create fun Halloween themed projects
Skills Utilized: language, learning body parts, color recognition
Suggested Reading: Little Blue Trucks Halloween by Alice Schertle
Materials: paint, paper, paintbrush, little hands and feet!

Other ideas:

1. Paint feet orange, yellow and white for candy corn!

2. Use handprints to make spiders

3. Ask your child what they would like to make! You’d be surprised how creative kids get with these crafts!

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Halloween: Spiderweb Painting with Marbles

For kids, art is even more fun when it involves lots of movement. Make this Halloween spiderweb painting while shaking your BOOty (get it, booooo-ty?)

For some people, there’s nothing creepier than a web full of spiders. I’m very much in the camp of “burn the house to the ground” so it’s a seasonally appropriate craft in these parts haha. Jasper actually loves looking at spiderwebs so I knew he’d really enjoy painting his own even though the ick factor wasn’t there for him. This is also a really fun ACTIVE painting project that incorporates process over product (even though the product is creepy cute!)

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Craft/Activity/Snack: Spiderweb Painting
Objective: Shake, shake, shake your way to a unique spiderweb painting just in time for Halloween
Skills Utilized: gross motor skills
Suggested Reading:
Materials: dark colored construction paper, white paint, spider cut outs (I used a discontinued EK success spider paper punch – this is a similar one), a large marble or bouncy ball, shoe box (one that will fit a full piece of construction paper), and glueMarbleWeb

Dab some white paint on the paper and place it at the bottom of a cardboard box. MarbleWeb2

Close the box and let your little shake, wiggle, and rock the box from side to side. (Finally, this project gave purpose to one of the many Amazon boxes we have delivered daily :-p) We’ve had plenty of rain lately so Jazz really took advantage of this part of the project and jumped around gleefully. MarbleWeb3

We were eager to peek inside to see what his web would look like and were not disappointed.For kids, art is even more fun when it involves lots of movement. Make this Halloween spiderweb painting while shaking your BOOty (get it, booooo-ty?)For kids, art is even more fun when it involves lots of movement. Make this Halloween spiderweb painting while shaking your BOOty (get it, booooo-ty?)

Now, you could stop here and let this simply be a process over product piece or you can ‘make sense’ of the random pattern and add little spiders. While I used a paper punch, you could cut spiders out of paper, use spider stickers, stamp spiders, create fingerprint spiders, or simply draw one. For kids, art is even more fun when it involves lots of movement. Make this Halloween spiderweb painting while shaking your BOOty (get it, booooo-ty?)

One or two spiders weren’t enough and Jasper decided to add a whole family to his creepy crawly masterpiece.For kids, art is even more fun when it involves lots of movement. Make this Halloween spiderweb painting while shaking your BOOty (get it, booooo-ty?)

Want some other SPIDER projects for a complete spider theme? How about these:

Bugs: The Icky Sticky Spiderweb GameIckySticky Spiderweb Game
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Extension Activities:

  1. Make several paintings and label each with a different number. Use that number to determine how many spiders should be added
  2. Venture outside to search for and observe a spider web
  3. Have a focus on the number 8, after all spiders have eight eyes and eight legs
  4. Use white crayon on black paper to draw your own spider webs

For kids, art is even more fun when it involves lots of movement. Make this Halloween spiderweb painting while shaking your BOOty (get it, booooo-ty?)
Illustrated Avatar Jess

Halloween: Cottonswab Skeleton

 

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October is here and it is not only Madelines birthday month but also the month of one of our favorite holidays-Halloween! Create these cute cotton swab skeletons for a fun and minimal supply decoration children of all ages will enjoy.

Craft/Activity/Snack: Cotton Swab Skeleton
Objective: Create dancing skeletons using glue and cotton swabs
Skills Utilized: following directions, identifying objects from small, medium, big, fine motor
Suggested Reading: Halloween Hustle By Charlotte Gunnufson
Materials:  glue, a “skeleton face” cut out, 3 cotton swabs, 6 cotton swabs cut in half (12 halves), 1 cotton swab tips cut off (so 2 small pieces), optional: bow

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First, I put the glue down to create the main part of the skeleton. You could certainly make this a process oriented skeleton by allowing your child to glue the swabs however they’d like, however for this particular craft, I wanted Maddy to follow specific instructions to create the dancing skeleton.

Next, I instructed Maddy to find a big cotton swab to put in the center glue line.

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She was already digging this project.

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Next, I asked her if she could find the medium size cotton swabs. She first reached for the smallest but I asked If there were any that were bigger than those, but smaller than the big one we just glued down. These further instructions helped and she was on it!

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Next we did the legs, so she had to find the big swabs. She incorporated counting as she glued down each leg- “1 little leg…2 little legs..”

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She asked to do the head and the bow next so that is what we did.

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Now do the monster boogie, the monster boogie ’round the room!!

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Ways to Expand Upon this Activity:

  1. Watch and dance to The Skeleton Dance !
  2. Add in some science and read The Skeleton Book by Robert Winston to learn about bones.

Illustrated Avatar Amanda

 

 

Halloween: Tissue Paper Sun Catchers

Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

One of my all time favorite playdate crafts is a tissue paper sun catcher. Aside from the tissue paper squares, it’s essentially a mess-free project which is great when you have several kids crafting away at your house. I’m pretty sure we make a version of these during every season, too, because they’re just that darn easy and cute. Last year, I hosted a huge playdate with our local MOMS Club and we made jack-o-lantern sun catchers so this year, the kids and I used the same method to make some fiendish friends.

Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Craft/Activity/Snack: Tissue Paper Sun Catcher Monsters
Objective: Utilize opaque black and transparent colored tissue paper to create monster faces
Skills Utilized: facial recognition, fine motor skills
Suggested Reading: Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson
Materials: clear contact paper, black tissue paper or construction paper cut into eyes/mouths/etc., and colored tissue paper squares (green for Frankenstein’s Monster or a witch, white for a ghost or mummy, orange for a pumpkin, etc.)Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Give each child a smallish rectangle of contact paper with the paper backing removed. They can touch it and explore it’s tackiness because they’re hands will easily come off whereas the paper will stick pretty much immediately. Jasper wanted to do a monster so he got a bowl of green tissue paper squares and Mila got the white to make a ghost.

First, our ghouls need a face! Let the children place the black eyes and mouth where they’d like on the contact paper. We also cut some hair for Frankie. I’m never concerned with the faces being applied perfectly because this is a child’s project… if they’re happy, you can be happy!Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Once the black pieces are down, it’s time to start adding all of the tissue paper. This step requires little to no guidance. The main goal is for as much of the contact paper to be covered but let them decide when they’re done. I supervised closely only because I was worried Mila would try to eat the paper. Surprisingly, she did not! She really enjoyed mashing handfuls of tissue paper onto the ground… some of which actually got onto the contact paper haha! Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Once your child is satisfied, you can place another piece of contact paper over the tissue (creating a sealed sandwich essentially) or you can leave it as is. Normally, I cover the reverse side with another piece but decided against it this time. Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Then, cut out the monster and hang in a window with a little tape! You could also punch a hole and string a ribbon through but totally not necessary. Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

Extension Activities:

  1. Cut a pile of tissue paper squares for several creepy things (orange for a Jack-o-Lantern, green for Frankenstein’s Monster or Witch, white for a Mummy or Ghost, brown for a Werewolf or spider, and gray for tombstones or zombies) and have the kids sort the squares by color
  2. Create a story about the monsters you create
  3. Count how many squares of tissue paper you used

Calling all ghouls and boys - here's a Halloween project that even your littlest crafters can make. Spooktacular!

When you make yours, be sure to share it on our Facebook page or tag us on Instagram using #crafternoonplaydate or @crafternoonplaydate

Illustrated Avatar Jess

Pumpkins: Pumpkin Painting

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I love carving a pumpkin with kids but it usually ends in these two scenarios – the child having the adult do all the work, or in my case, me making my dear husband do all the work! To make this process of picking out a pumpkin and decorating it easier on everyone, I have been getting mini pumpkins for the children in my care and now my own little one to paint as they see fit!

Craft/Activity/Snack: Pumpkin Painting
Objective: use a pumpkin as a canvas for a process over product oriented craft
Skills Utilized: painting, color identification, fine motor skills
Suggested Reading: The Biggest Pumpkin Ever by Steven Kroll
Materials: any size or color pumpkin, paint, paintbrushes, paint palatte

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Ways to Expand Upon this Activity:

1. Make it a super easy clean up by using stickers instead of paint!
2. If you do have the time and energy to carve a pumpkin, scooping and exploring the inside of a pumpkin makes a wonderful sensory activity for toddlers and preschoolers!
3. Make it an early literacy activity by practicing writing letters on the pumpkins.
4. Use washable paint so you can wash the pumpkin off and paint again and again! (we did this!

 

Illustrated Avatar Amanda

Pumpkins: Watercolor Shapes

Don’t have the time to prep but want a simple and educational craft to display? Try this Patch of Pumpkin Shapes with your preschooler!

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Craft/Activity/Snack: Pumpkin Patch of Shapes
Objective: Paint/decorate pumpkins that look like shapes to help reinforce shape recognition
Skills Utilized: shape recognition, pre-writing skills, fine motor skills
Suggested Reading: Big Pumpkin (my favorite!) by Erica Silverman
Materials: White construction paper, permanent marker, and orange art medium of your choice (we used watercolor paint)

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This pumpkin patch craft is great because it requires literally no prep and you can use literally any craft medium you have available – crayons, markers, glitter and glue, regular washable paint, etc. I absolutely adore watercolors and will find any excuse to bring them out for Jasper so you can guess why we used them this time around. Another reason I love this project is because if you have multiple children, an entire playgroup, or a classroom of kids you can let each child pick a single shape and you can create a pumpkin patch display with each of their works of art. Since it’s just Jasper and I (as Mila was napping), I let him dictate which shapes he wanted and drew them out for him.

STEP 1: Start by asking your child which shape/shapes they would like to see. Taking their lead, draw your shapes with permanent marker and morph them into pumpkins by rounding out the angles and then adding curved vertical lines, a stem and vine. Voila!

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STEP 2: Paint or color the pumpkin/s and that’s it. Seriously. PumpkinShapes2PumpkinShapes3PumpkinShapes4

Jasper enjoyed this so much he actually requested a second sheet with even more shapes: PUmpkinShapes5pUMPKINsHAPES6PumpkinShapesFeatured

Such an easy and fast project with a unique end result. You can also give the kids green or brown paint to fill in the stem and vine.

Illustrated Avatar Jess

 

 

 

Pumpkins: Jack-o-lantern Mash Up Printable

Love Jack-o-Lanterns? Your preschooler is sure to enjoy the multitude of silly pumpkin faces they can create with our free printable! - Crafternoon Playdate

One of our favorite fall traditions is making jack-o-lanterns. It’s still a little early in the season so this mess-free activity is a great stand in! Your preschooler is sure to enjoy the multitude of silly pumpkin faces they can create. All you need is to download our FREE printable, cut it apart and you’re set.  Grab the download after the jump…

Love Jack-o-Lanterns? Your preschooler is sure to enjoy the multitude of silly pumpkin faces they can create with our free printable! - Crafternoon Playdate Continue reading “Pumpkins: Jack-o-lantern Mash Up Printable”

Pumpkins: Bubble Wrap Pumpkins

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Fall is in full swing here in New England! If you haven’t already guessed, it’s kind of a favorite season here at Crafternoon Playdate. We kicked our pumpkin unit off by visiting a super cute farm this weekend and checking out the cool pumpkin patch there. We also went apple picking and sunflower picking! Our first craft matched the cute little pumpkin we got perfectly. Create these interesting looking pumpkins by following the technique below, which you can easily incorporate into other themes, too!

Craft/Activity/Snack: Bubble wrap pumpkins
Objective: Use bubble wrap as stamping tool to create pumpkins
Skills Utilized: fine motor skills (peeling and popping that fun bubble wrap!), following directions, exploring different textures
Suggested Reading: The Pumpkin Book by Gail Gibbons
Materials: bubble wrap (we just moved to our new place so we have LOTS of this!) orange paint, scissors, white paper. Optional for the stem and vines: green and brown markers

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First, cut the bubble wrap into “pumpkin shapes”. I just made them little oval/circular shapes. While I did the cutting, Maddy enjoyed popping some of the extra bubble wrap.

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We counted how many “pumpkins” I cut out. Next, we poured some of the orange paint onto the plate. Carefully lay the pumpkin “bubble side” down into the paint. Gently pat down to ensure paint gets on all the bubbles.

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Instruct your little one to slowly peel the pumpkin up from the paint and place it onto the paper. Pat gently down again.

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I told Madeline to slowly pull up and she was amazed! She added a few more pumpkins and really got the hang of carefully dipping, laying down, and peeling up the bubble wrap.

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Madeline did two more “pumpkin patches” and also did some roller art with a roller art sponge tool she has, similar to these.  While she worked on this process over product artwork, I used the brown and green markers to add some simple stems and vines to her pumpkins. I like how unique they look but you can still very clearly tell they are darling little pumpkins!

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Ways to Expand Upon this Activity:

  1. Make it a color mixing activity-create your own orange paint by having your child mix yellow and red together.
  2. Practice cutting skills by having your child cut the pumpkins out after the dry.
  3. Practice writing numbers by labeling the pumpkins 1,2,3 etc
  4. Have your child draw the stem and vines.

Illustrated Avatar Amanda

 

Pumpkins: P Stamp Pumpkin Patch

Reinforce letter sounds with a picture perfect pumpkin patch project - Crafternoon Playdate

To begin our PUMPKIN theme, I’m going back to basics with a “P is for Pumpkin” project. We focus on letters a lot at home so anytime I can tie in a letter to a craft, I’m eager to do so.

Reinforce letter sounds with a picture perfect pumpkin patch project - Crafternoon Playdate

I grabbed these alphabet sand molds at a deep discount from Target which is a major preschool mom score. I’m already planning lots of different uses for them, none of which involve any sand. They were the perfect tool for this project but you could use a P stamp, magnet or cookie cutter as well.  Continue reading “Pumpkins: P Stamp Pumpkin Patch”

Apples: Apple Printing

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When we go apple picking, we always bring home almost (if there is such a thing!) too many apples. Between snacking on them as is, making pies and homemade applesauce, and sharing them with friends, I’m always sure to save one to do some classic apple printing. We created a displayable apple by printing on a cut out apple shape, but you can simply use a regular piece of paper.

Craft/Activity/Snack: Apple Printing
Objective: Use an apple as a medium to decorate an apple shape (optional-can use any shape paper!)
Skills Utilized: fine motor skills, discovering different textures, using your senses (touch, scent, sight)
Suggested Reading: How do Apples Grow?  By Betsy Maestro
Materials: an apple, red paint, paper cut into an apple shape, a knife to cut the apple

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First, the grown up needs to cut that apple in half. Cut down the middle, as the dashed line indicates below:

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You will end up with two halves like this:

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Don’t forget to save the seeds to do the apple core project we did last week!

Next, either use a paint brush to paint the apple halves red or dip the apples into red paint.

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Let your little one grasp the apple and stamp away. Madeline enjoyed pushing down and patting the apple to make sure it stamped just right.

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The finished project is a nice and bright child led piece of art.

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Ways to Expand Upon this Activity:

  1. Use green or yellow paint to create other colored apples.
  2. Cut around the core to create a different shape other then a circle-try a triangle or square.
  3. Save one of the halves as a yummy snack like these apple nachos Jess made with Jasper for the blogs apple unit!

    Illustrated Avatar Amanda