I remember growing up, and celebrating Earth Day once a year. Now, I'm always thinking about ways to reduce, recycle and upcycle. There are three reasons why I think upcycled kid crafts are ideal for busy moms.
1) It's cheaper. I could spend so much money on really amazing craft supplies. But, sticking with the basics and supplementing with recycled materials can save a lot of money.
2) It's convenient. It's much easier to grab something from the recycle bin vs. dragging the kids to the craft store. I love going to the craft store alone, but with kids, it's a whole other story.
3) It's earth friendly. Obviously, it's better for the environment to make use of something we already have instead of buying new material. We are leaving this planet to our children, and I want to leave it the best it can be.
So, with summer approaching, I wanted to share some of my favorite upcycled and recycled crafts for kids. Here they are:
One thing we always have in our recycle bin is thin cardboard boxes and they seem to accumulate. My son came home from preschool one day with this really cute recycled robot craft. I have always been impressed with some of the art projects my son does at preschool. This one is really easy and I love the results.
I love these upcycled bright summer flowers. They almost look so good you would never know they were made with old plastic water bottles.
This is an easy one! Just take an empty cardboard toilet paper tube. Spread on some peanut butter. Cover it in bird seed. Easy as 1,2,3! You don't need any string because you just slip it on a branch and let the birds enjoy.
Did you ever think of upcycling a mustard bottle for a Bumble Bee Garden Stake? I didn't, but it's a great way to re-use those bright yellow bottles.
My kids love butterflies and these egg carton caterpillars that turn into butterflies teach kids about metamorphosis and upcycling at the same time. This simple craft easily shows kids how we can recycle and re-use items that would otherwise be thrown away (cardboard egg cartons and paper bags) and teaches a bit of science as well!
If you want to see more fun upcycling crafts and summer fun activities for kids, check out my Pinterest boards!
If you have a rugby fan in your house and live in the Philadelphia area, here's an event & ticket giveaway just for you! The Collegiate Rugby Championship is coming to PPL Park and it's going to be an action packed event with some of the country's top college rugby players.
The Collegiate Rugby Championship is the premier college rugby tournament in the country, and serves as a national platform for America's future Olympians. The current USA RugbySevens National team includes 3 full-time players who have competed in the CRC tournament within the past two-years. The tournament features 20 of the top college teams, including local teams Drexel, Penn, Temple, St. Joe’s and Penn State, competing in 44 matches across two-days as they vie for the coveted Pete Dawkins trophy.
Event: Collegiate Rugby Championship
Date: Saturday, May 31 – Sunday, June 1
Venue: PPL Park, 1 Stadium Drive, Chester, PA
Looking for a promo code? It's your lucky day, because I have a discount code for you!
Promo Code: BLOG
Valid for all session and single day. Use discount code to save $5 per ticket. Not valid on youth tickets.
PPL Park is one of my favorite local venues. It's modern and I think it's very family-friendly too. This is a very popular event, so if you want tickets, you can order them online today at the Philadelphia Union website.
On behalf of #CRC2014, I'm giving away 4 tickets to one Local Fun for Kids reader!
Enter using the rafflecoptor widget below.
The past couple of years, I have written about Water Balloon Games for Kids, and this year I'm putting together my best list yet! Whether you need a water balloon game for summer camp, field day or just a lazy summer day, I hope you'll find something here that you like!
After searching high and low for some of the best water balloon games, here are my top picks:
1) The water balloon version of 'Hot Potato' is a great twist on the original. Get the kids to sit in a circle and start passing around a water balloon. Start playing some music and then, at random intervals, turn off the music. Whoever is left holding the water balloon or whoever pops it is the one out. The last child left in the game is the winner.
2) Paint with Water Balloons - My kids and I have used balloons for painting and the results were absolutely beautiful. Our balloons were filled with air, but adding weight and movement with water balloons is a completly new sensory experience for kids, and you'll be surprised at how beautiful the results can be.
3) Water Balloon Number Target Practice - Combine number recognition review and water balloons for a fun, easy and educational summer game. Read more at Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas.
4) Balloon Roll - For this game, you have to keep your water balloon on the ground. The child that rolls their water balloon the farthest, and does not pop it, wins!
5) Nothing is better on a hot summer day than Water Balloon Dodge Ball. Last week, my boys decided that I was the going to play this game with them, even if I was fully dressed. There are too many serious moments in life, so letting your kids hit you with water balloons can be really fun. If you have a group of older kids, you can really get an organized game of dodge ball going. First, make sure you have a lot of water balloons and a bunch of kids. Separate the kids into teams and then, let the kids go at it! If you get hit by an opposing team member, you're out.
6) For older kids and teens, Water Balloon Darts can be a fun activity. Just prop up the balloons on a target, give each one a value (20 points, 40, points, 60, points, 80 points and 100 points.) See who can accumulate the most points for each balloon they hit.
7) Angry Bird Inspired Water Balloon Game - "Inspired by the mega popular video game Angry Birds this takes the game outside into the sun for fun all summer long." Read more at No Time for Flash Cards.
8) Water Balloon Relay Race - Set out one chair for each team and place a water balloon in the seat. Then, players take turns running to the chair, and sitting on the balloon till it pops. After they pop the balloon, they run and tag the next player. (You will need to put a new balloon in after each one is popped.) The first team to pop all their balloons and cross the finish line wins.
9) Water Balloon Sight Word Toss - It's really simple to help reinforce sight words while playing a water balloon toss game. Learn more at Royal Balloo.
10) Water Balloon Pinatas - Hang balloons from your monkey bars or clothes line. Let the kids take turns hitting the "pinatas."
11) How Far Can You Go? See who can throw their water balloon the farthest. The kid who gets their's the farthest WITHOUT POPPING it, wins!
12) The Water Balloon Challenge is a water game for youth groups – one that’s designed to make a big splash!
13) Keep the music rolling and you can also play a fun game of Musical Water Balloons. Just like musical chairs, you will need 1 less water balloon each round (for instance, 5 players = 4 water balloons). Gently lay the balloons on the grass. Start playing some music and then have the kids walk in a circluar motion. At random intervals, turn off the music. When the music stops, the kids need to find a ballon and sit on it. Whoever is left without a water balloon to sit on is out. The last child left in the game is the winner.
14) Splash and Score Baseball - Kids can test their aim and douse their opponent at the same time with this water balloon game of throwing and blocking skills.
15) Water Balloon Spoon Races -Use a plastic serving spoon or a wooden spoon for this simple summer game.
16) Fill the Bucket - This is a great team game perfect for a kid's group or camp. Each team uses water balloons to fill up a bucket. Whichever team fills the bucket first wins!
17) Water Balloon YoYo - Cut a rubberband in half. Then, attach the rubber band to the water balloon. The kids have to yo-yo them up and down until the last one with their balloon in tact wins!
18) Water Balloon Tag - Whoever is “it” carries the water balloon. If you get hit and the balloon breaks then, “Tag you’re it!
19) Even preschoolers can have fun filling up the water balloons. So, this game idea is simple. Just let the kids try to fill up the water balloons with the hose. Whoever can make the biggest balloon without it popping it is the winner!
21) Pop the Sharks - Draw a simple shark face on about 10 water balloons. Then, fill a kiddie pool with water and add the balloons. Give each child 15 seconds in the pool, and whoever pops the most sharks wins.
22) If you have 8 or more kids, find two sheets or table cloths for a Group Catapult. Have each child hold a corner (4 kids per sheet). Then, throw a water balloon onto the first sheet and have the 1st team try to propel it over to the 2nd teams table cloth. This video shows how it's done.
23) And, finally....everyone loves a good old fashioned Water Balloon Toss. Everyone line up and stand across from your partner. Everyone takes turns tossing the balloon to their partner. The last team to pop their balloon wins!
Did you know that the largest water balloon fight consisted of 8,957 participants and was achieved by Christian Student Fellowship at the University of Kentucky in 2011? A total of 175,141 water balloons were used during the fight. source
I can't even imagine filling up that many water balloons. But, last year we found a really cool product that made it so easy to make & tie water balloons that my 5 year old was doing it all by himself. Take a look:
Learn more about the Imperial Toy Kaos Portable Pumping Station, here.
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