Fun Craft Projects for ages 8-12 that won't drive leaders crazy
January 12, 2014 6:29 PM   Subscribe

I'm helping with a group for kids age 8-12 that meets monthly. Every meeting includes a craft activity. My co-leader has been scouring the internet for ideas but then spends way to much time pre-testing the projects, making templates etc. and doing prep work. I'm looking for resources (books or websites) that have fool-proof projects for this age group.

More specific requirements:
- fun for kids (bonus if it looks impressive or is useful)
- low cost (less than $5 per child)
- time for projects is 20-40 minutes
- ability level is normal for that age range (8-12)
- group is co-ed
- we have a good ratio of adults and teens to help
- we use a classroom type space with vinyl tablecloths and aprons and linoleum floor. We need to make sure everything is clean when we leave. In warm weather we can outdoors (but still need to leave site clean.) No water in the room.
- clear, easy to follow directions
posted by metahawk to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (4 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
I just made paper beads with my Girl Scout troop on Wednesday. We used ads torn from magazines as the paper, stir straws (pilfered from work, shhh) to roll the beads up on, and cheap clear (and clear with glitter!) nail polish I already had as the varnish. We strung them up on yarn to make jewelry when they were dry. The girls loved it. Took a little while to figure it out (I had never made them before, so it was my first time right along with the girls) but once they got the hang of it they had a blast. They are 5-8 years old, so younger than your kids but I think it's a craft that age scales up just fine.
posted by phunniemee at 6:46 PM on January 12, 2014

Here are some ideas:

Papel Picado
Tin painting
Angry Birds
Duct tape
posted by amapolaroja at 7:33 PM on January 12, 2014

Arm knitting, maybe?

When I was about that age, my scout troup made terrariums one year, which we thought was pretty cool.
posted by MeghanC at 8:40 PM on January 12, 2014

Martha Stewart's Favorite Crafts for Kids is a solid compilation of craft activities that include that age band. I've found with the ones I've carried out that the materials list, instructions and estimates of complexity are accurate, and you could cross-check them fairly easily on pinterest/google. I would be confident using them as a template for an activity without doing a pre-check.

Deep Space Sparkle is a great art teacher blog on the nitty gritty of running lessons with a range of kids, and she also sells packaged lesson plans with very detailed and supportive instructions.
posted by viggorlijah at 9:02 PM on January 12, 2014

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