Merry Christmas!

Christmas Art and Craft Activities for Children

Oriental Trading Company, Inc.



Angel Ornaments

heavy white or ivory and yellow paper (construction paper works well)
colored pencils or markers
hole punch
ribbon or string
shirt paint or glitter glue (optional)
glitter, sugar, or salt (optional)

Assemble necessary materials, then create using instructions given on pattern page.

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Bread Baubles

Thanks to Carolyn Güven for this activity!
white loaf bread
cookie cutters
gold string
glitter (optional)
sequins, beads, etc. (optional)

Use a cookie cutter to cut shapes into white bread. Use the end of a straw to make a hole near the top of the shape. Leave shapes to harden overnight. Paint in bright colours using either poster paints or powder paints with a little household glue added. Leave ornaments to dry.

After ornaments have dried, turn them over and paint the other side. When dry, add beads, glitter etc.

Loop gold string through hole. Hang on Christmas tree.

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Christmas Puzzles

Collect old Christmas cards. Cut off card fronts and save. (Kids, get your parents permission before cutting up any cards they have saved!) Using a black marker, draw several squiggle lines on the back side of the card front (not the picture side) as shown. Cut card along these lines. Place all pieces in a plastic bag.

These puzzles are especially fun to create with a friend. Choose cards, mark, and cut, then exchange pieces. See who can assemble their puzzle more quickly.

Hint: Use a separate bag for each puzzle.

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Christmas Tree Mural

Thanks to Carolyn Güven for this activity!
green posterboard or heavy green paper
wrapping paper
catalogs or magazines

Make a large green butcher card tree shape. Take lots of bits of shiny paper (candywrappers, old wrapping-paper, etc.) and a couple of colourful magazines. Give the kids some safe scissors and tell them to cut out decoration and/or bauble shapes to stick on to the tree shape.

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Cinnamon Cut-outs

1 cup ground cinnamon
3/4 to 1 cup apple sauce
2 Tbsp. white glue
1 Tbsp. ground nutmeg (optional)
1 Tbsp. ground cloves (optional)

Mix cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves (if other spices are used) with glue and 3/4 cup apple sauce to form smooth, stiff dough. Additional apple sauce may be added if needed. Divide dough into three or four portions. Place each section between two sheets of waxed paper, and roll to 1/8 inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut Christmas shapes out of dough. While dough is still soft, use a straw to make a hole near the top of each shape where ribbon can later be inserted for hanging. Place cut shapes on flat surface to air dry for several days. Flip shapes daily to prevent curling. After shapes are thoroughly dry, insert ribbon in hole, tie, and hang as Christmas ornaments.

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Cinnamon Cut-outs (Recipe Two)

This dough is a little more durable than the previous one. In some countries, ingredients may be cheaper as well.

1 1/8 cup flour
3/4 cup ground cinnamon
1 cup salt
1 cup water
1 Tbsp. ground nutmeg (optional)
1 Tbsp. ground cloves (optional)

Mix dry ingredients with water to form smooth, stiff dough. Divide dough into three or four portions. Place each section between two sheets of waxed paper, and roll to 1/4-3/8 inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut Christmas shapes out of dough. While dough is still soft, use a straw to make a hole near the top of each shape where ribbon can later be inserted for hanging. Bake cut shapes at 350 degrees 15-20 minutes to dry. Insert ribbon in hole, tie, and hang as Christmas ornaments.

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Confetti Christmas Trees

tag board or heavy green paper
crayons or oil pastels (optional)
hole punch
colored paper

Draw or trace Christmas tree shape on tag board or other heavy green paper. Cut out. Make "ornaments" by using a hole punch to punch confetti shapes out of various colors of paper. (Shaped hole punches are nice for this project, but the plain old round variety works equally well.) Glue ornaments to tree. Use crayons or oil pastels to add additional decorations if desired.

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Gingerbread People

gingerbread manbrown paper bags
colored pencils
colored paper
sequins, ribbon, etc.

Copy the gingerbread shape onto brown paper. Cut out. Decorate paper gingerbread people with available materials.

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Edible Art

  • Oh Christmas Tree
    sugar cones
    green frosting
    small candies
    plastic knives

    Give each child a sugar cone and a plastic knife. Place containers of green frosting where each student can reach one. Show children how to "frost" the ice cream cone to make a Christmas tree. After the tree is frosted, decorate with small candies.

  • Bagel Wreaths
    Plain or cinnamon bagels
    cream cheese, tinted green (may be sweetened slightly, if desired)
    dried cranberries ("craisins"), raisins, or dried cherries

    Give each child half a bagel and a plastic knife. Place containers of green cream cheese where each student can reach one. Show children how to spread cream cheese onto bagels to make a wreath. Decorate the wreath with dried fruit.

  • Snowflakes
    waxed paper
    thin white frosting
    disposable cake decorating bags
    silver cake decorations

    Give each child a sheet of waxed paper and a disposable decorating bag filled with thin white frosting. Show children how to drizzle frosting onto paper in snowflake pattern. Add silver balls.

    Allow to dry completely, before eating.

  • Holly Jolly Christmas Candies
    4 cups corn flakes
    2 cups marshmallows
    1/2 cup margarine
    1 tsp. vanilla
    green food coloring
    heat source
    large mixing spoon
    waxed paper
    plastic spoons
    red hot candies

    Melt together over low heat marshmallows and margarine. After mixture is melted, remove from heat and add vanilla and food coloring. Stir in corn flakes.

    Let children take turns dropping the mixture by spoonfuls onto waxed paper. Add three cinnamon "holly berries" to each candy. Allow to dry before eating. Both pretty and delicious!

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Frosted Christmas Tree Ornaments

oak tag
green crayons
hole punch
thin gold or silver ribbon
stove or burner
small pot
epsom salts
warm water

Trace or draw Christmas tree on oak tag or cardstock. Cut out. Color tree green. Punch hole in the top of the tree.

While children are cutting trees, an adult should mix two cups of Epsom salts with one cup of water in small saucepan and heat the mixture until the salt has dissolved completely. 

Children may then use paintbrushes to apply the warm mixture to their trees. (Temperature is important. Mixture should be cool enough not to burn children, but warm enough that water and sand do not begin to separate.

Set trees aside to dry. As trees dry, the salt will take on a crystalline, frost-like appearance. Once trees are dry, you may run a ribbon through the pre-punched hole and hang these ornaments on the Christmas tree.

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Gift Certificates

colored pencils, crayons, and/or markers
glitter (optional)

Not all presents sit under the Christmas tree in pretty boxes. Sometimes people give gift certificates for Christmas. A gift certificate is a simple piece of paper that lets the person who owns it trade it in whenever he or she wants for a gift. Sometimes a gift certificate works like money. It may be worth $10, $20, $50, or another amount (which is written on the certificate) at a certain store. Sometimes a gift certificate gives its owner a special privilege--dinner for two at a nice restaurant, three months at a health club, a pound of one's favorite candy at a candy store, and so forth.

You can easily make your own Christmas gift certificates. Think of several things you can do well, things that other people would appreciate. Maybe Mom would appreciate your washing the dishes. Maybe Dad would appreciate your cleaning the car. Maybe your younger brother or sister would appreciate your offering to read to them or play with them. Maybe Grandma or Grandpa would appreciate your running errands for them.

Have you thought of things you could do for your friends and family this Christmas? Then you're ready to make gift certificates. I've designed four sample gift certificates which you can view by clicking here. You may print these, color them, fill in the blanks, and give them away; or you may create your own.

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Glitter Creations

waxed paper
gold thread

Give each child a sheet of wax paper and a bottle of glue. Instruct children to use glue bottle to "draw" Christmas shapes on waxed paper. After shapes are drawn, let children sprinkle glitter onto them. Allow designs to dry thoroughly, then thread a length of gold thread through the top of each shape. These glittery ornaments add a nice touch to the Christmas tree!

Suggestion: For younger children, photocopy some simple Christmas shapes--an angel, a trumpet, a drum, a bell, a Christmas tree, etc. Instruct children to lay wax paper on top of patterns and use glue bottle to trace over each pattern. Finish as above.

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Popcorn Wreaths

cardboard wreaths
plastic knives
peanut butter

Cut wreath shapes out of cardboard. Give each child a wreath and a plastic knife. Let children spread peanut butter over wreath. Pour birdseed over peanut-covered wreath. Use spots of peanut butter to "glue" pieces of popcorn onto the wreath in a bow shape. Hang the wreaths outside where children can see them. Birds and other outdoor creatures will have a feast!

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Red/Green Collages

red and green paper
heavy white paper (construction paper or poster board)

Tear red and green paper into small pieces. Glue pieces onto white paper to create a Christmas design. Some possible designs include a Christmas tree, a candle, bells, an angel, a poinsettia, or musical instruments.

If you use this as a group activity, you might compare pictures. Whose picture is the most unusual? the neatest? the smallest? the largest?

After collages are dry, depending on their size, you may use them as Christmas cards, ornaments, wall hangings, etc.

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Shimmering Stars

heavy white paper or poster board
yellow paint
paint brush
sugar or salt
hole punch
heavy string or yarn
clothes hanger (optional)

Draw or trace using the pattern provided several stars on heavy paper or poster board. Carefully cut stars out. Paint with yellow paint. While stars are still wet, sprinkle them with salt or sugar. Stars will sparkle and shimmer when dry. After stars are dry, you may punch a hole in one corner and thread yarn through. Stars may be hung as individual ornaments, hung on a clothes hanger to create a mobile, or strung together to form a garland.

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Snow Paintings

white laundry detergent
     *Ivory Snow works best because it is pure soap--no additives like most other detergents
warm water

Mix two cups of Ivory Snow with 1 1/2 cups of warm water. Beat until stiff and foamy. Use fingers or paintbrushes to paint "snow" designs on dark construction paper.

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clean, empty baby food jars
mineral water
clear corn syrup
small plastic figures (must fit inside baby food jars)
      *I've found tiny plastic mangers at a craft store; angels and snowmen are also cute.
waterproof glue

Mix one teaspoon corn syrup per cup of mineral water. Set aside. Glue plastic figure to inside of jar lid. Allow adhesive to dry completely. Add glitter to baby food jar. Use 1/2 tsp. for small jars or 1 tsp. for large. Pour water mixture into jar, stopping 1/4 inch below rim. Screw lid on tightly. Shake jar, then stand it upside down (on it's lid). The glitter "snow" will slowly settle around figure.

To create a more permanent snowscape, glue lid onto jar with waterproof adhesive. Allow to dry thoroughly before turning jar on lid.

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Star of David

Thanks to Carolyn Güven for this activity!
lolly/popsicle sticks
gold string

Take 6 lolly/popsicle sticks and glue them into two triangles. Glue the two triangles into a Star of David shape. Paint and decorate with glitter etc. Tie a pretty string through one of the points, then hang on Christmas tree.

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Stained Glass Window Clings

Christmas coloring pages
crayons or oil pastels
cooking oil
cotton balls

Neatly color a Christmas coloring page, pressing crayons or oil pastels hard against paper. Lay colored page on several layers of newspaper. Dip a cotton ball in cooking oil, and rub oil over surface of the page. Make sure page is thoroughly oiled; then, wipe off excess oil. (Neither dry spots nor "puddles" should be showing.) Leave page on paper for several hours until oil is absorbed into paper. Affix finished page to a window and watch the sun stream through the transluscent colors.

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U.S. Toy Co. (125x125)

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