When school’s out for summer, it can be difficult to keep the little ones occupied for all those weeks. Luckily, there’s loads of great creative projects and fun crafts that your kids are sure to love – and not just for summer, but all year round! Here are some of the top suggestions.

Making Playdough

Sure, you can buy playdough in the store, but it’s a lot more fun if you make it yourself. Playdough is really easy to make and you just need a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen cabinets:

Ingredients

1 cup of flour

1 cup of water

2 teaspoons of cream of tartar

½ cup of salt

1 tablespoon of vegetable oil

few drops of food coloring

Peppermint or vanilla extract

This makes quite a large batch, so feel free to half the recipe and make two colors in two different pans.

Mix all of the ingredients except the food coloring in a saucepan and add a touch of vanilla or peppermint extract. Stir constantly while cooking over a medium heat. The mixture will begin to thicken and then add the food coloring and continue stirring. Once the mixture becomes solid, take it off the heat and allow to cool. Once cool, remove it from the saucepan and put in on a plate to finish cooling. Store it in a ziplock bag in the fridge. You can then use it to model anything you like.

Heart Art

This is the easiest art project to set up, but the results are really effective and make a great present for grandparents or a favorite aunt or uncle. Paint your child’s hands red and place them down carefully on white card forming a heart shape with the thumbs touching. You can then add a poem, small drawings or some personal messages around the heart and put it in a frame for a special gift.

Marble Magnets

This is a really fun activity that produces something lovely to stick on your fridge door.

You’ll need:

Some Mod Podge

Small round magnets

Flat glass marbles

Foam brus

Small pictures that have been cut from a magazine

Hot glue gun

Your child will enjoy finding small pictures in magazines that they’d like to use for their magnet. The brighter and more colorful the better! Put the marble over their chosen picture and trace around it. Cut the picture out, just slightly inside the line you’ve traced. Put some Mod Podge onto the marble’s flat side and put the marble onto the picture, pressing down. Leave to dry. Once the picture is dry, use the hot glue gun to stick the magnet onto the back of the marble. Once the glue is dry, you can stick it on your fridge.

Shell Nightlight

If you’ve just been on a trip to the beach and want to create a special memento for your home, a homemade seashell nightlight is a great way to bring the beach into your room! You’ll need a lightweight large shell that has a smooth base so you can easily glue it,

You’ll need:

A night light  

Strong glue

Lightweight large shell

Take the cover off the nightlight and glue the base of the shell to the exterior of the night light’s fixture. Leave the glue to dry and you have a fantastic simple nightlight.