Menorah and Dreidel Snowflakes

Make snowflakes in holiday shapes!

on-window

Full confession – snowflakes are just not my thing. I always seem to cut the wrong side and the whole thing falls apart, or my design just looks like a bunch of weird holes. But! thinking about the winter holiday of Chanukah, it seemed like snowflakes and Chanukah shapes just had to come together. My original idea was to have dreidel-shaped pieces of paper to cut into snowflakes but once you started to cut further designs into the dreidel, it lost it’s recognizable shape. It took many tries, but I finally hit on the idea of having the negative space form the dreidel. It looked a little plain with just a dreidel, so I also added a menorah. Snowflakes: consider yourself conquered!

done

We decorated with glitter glue, but as always, there is no wrong way to decorate these. If we had had glitter in the house, I was thinking of mixing some into paint and giving some shine that way, but plain old crayons will certainly get the job done should your horror of glitter extend as far as mine.

Hang them on the window where you are lighting your menorah and add some extra holiday spirit!

Looking for more Chanukah projects?
Light a Paper Menorah
Nature Menorahs
“Spinning” Paper Dreidel
Decorate a Dreidel…with a Dreidel!

Menorah and Dreidel Snowflakes

Time:
Active: 5 minutes for cutting (assuming you get it right the first time!), 10 minutes for decorating
Drying: 15 minutes+ if using paint or glue

Age: 4-7

Materials:
Paper
Scissors
Something with which to decorate the snowflakes – something glittery adds winter spirit

Process:
I recommend an adult do the cutting here to make sure it works out correctly. Fold your paper into eighths by folding in half, half again and then half again.  I unfolded the paper here to show you how it looks but keep your paper folded.

folded-paper

On the side with the folded seam, cut the shape of half a dreidel.

just-dreidel-side

On the opposite side, about halfway up the center of the dreidel, cut the shape of half a menorah. We just cut a shamash, since all eight candles seemed too hard, but if you are a scissor whiz, go for it! (Cut just 4 candles, since we are only cutting half of the total shape.)

both-sides-cut

Unfold and here is what it should look like!

all-cut

Feel free to keep cutting shapes around the edges, I just felt it was chancy and I might end up messing it up so I stuck with just the holiday shapes.

Decorate however you wish and then hang in the window!

Did you do this project? Share your pictures on our facebook page!

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“Light” a Paper Menorah

Even the youngest child can light a paper menorah!

lit

Now that Thanksgiving is over, it’s time to start getting ready for Chanukah! I wanted to make something for kids who are old enough to know that we light a menorah on Chanukah but who are not old enough to be trusted with actual fire. Enter this paper menorah.

Start with a blank menorah. Draw your own (don’t forget flames!) or download the template here. We decorated our menorah by gluing on squares of tissue paper, which the kids really enjoyed but of course you could use markers, crayons or whatever you prefer . When it dried, we cut it out and then used paper fasteners to create flames that can be rotated upwards it’s time to “light” them.

none

Where are all the flames?

three

Tada! It’s the third night of Chanukah!

We use cardstock for our menorah which turned out not to have been a smart choice when if came time to attach the flames. The paper fasteners are not strong enough to poke through it on their own so I had to laboriously pre-poke holes in both the menorah and the flames and rotating the flames is a bit tough when done. Just use regular paper and you should be fine.

Looking for more Chanukah projects?
Nature Menorahs
“Spinning” Paper Dreidel
Decorate a Dreidel…with a Dreidel!

Lighting Paper Menorahs

Time:
Active: 15 minutes for decorating, 10 minutes for assembly by adult
Drying: 15 minutes+ if using paint or glue

Age: 2-8

Materials:
Drawing or printout of menorah and flames. Download the template here.
Something with which to decorate the menorah – we used squares of tissue paper and glue but paint, markers, crayons, or stickers would be great too.
Scissors
9 paper fasteners

Process:
Print out the template or draw your own menorah and decorate. Don’t worry if you go out the lines because it will be cut later. Let dry if needed.

assembled

Cut out the menorah and flames. We decided not to cut in between each branch since once the paper fasteners were attached they would weigh down the flimsy branches.

Attach flames by poking the paper fasteners from front to back. Turn over your menorah and decorated side facing out, slide the flame on to the fastener. Open fastener flaps and make sure flame can rotate.

poking

When you have all of the flames attached, here is what it should look like:

back

Did you do this project? Share your pictures on our facebook page!

Torah Bag

Store your things in a Torah bag this Simchat Torah!

torah-bag

We have been spending Yom Tov with my parents. The rabbi of their shul gives Torah cards to any kid who wishes him a good Shabbos or Yom Tov, which is the highlight of shul for many kids. My kids amassed quite a collection over all of the holidays. On Sunday morning of Chol HaMoed Sukkot, my daughter came up with a great idea of how to store them – make a “Torah bag.” She proceeded to direct my mom to give her specific supplies and put together an amazing bag!

Since they were working with limited supplies, I put together an upgraded version to share with you. I think these are adorable and have multiple potential uses if you do not have Torah cards. Bring them to shul on Simchat Torah to collect whatever the kids get there (candy overload is one of my pet peeves but that is for a different discussion). Use them as favor bags at an upsherin. Or, as my daugher helpfully suggested, just use them for storing Shopkins.

Torah Bag

Time:
Active: 30 minutes
Drying: 15 minutes+ if using paint or glue

Age: 2-9

Materials:
Brown paper bag
Something with which to decorate the bag – paint, markers, crayons, stickers
2 paper towel rolls
Tinfoil
Scissors
Glue or tape

Process:
Trim off approximately 2.25″ from the top of the paper bag. The allows the paper towel tubes to stick out on the top and the bottom. Decorate your bag however you want. We had crown stickers, so I used one here, along with our favorite dot paint.

Cover the paper towel tubes with tinfoil. I didn’t find it necessary to use any glue or tape, just tuck the edges in at the ends.

Glue or tape the back of the bag to the paper towel rolls. Only attach the top 2/3 of the bag. Do not glue or tape the bottom part of the bag or it will not fold flat.

gluing-bag

Allow to dry, fill and enjoy!

Did you do this project? Share your pictures on our facebook page!

Pop-up Apple Place Cards for Rosh Hashanah

Make your holiday table fun with pop-up apple place cards!

apple place card

School has begun, long sleeves have been stocked in the drawers, and our neighbor’s tree is full of apples…fall is just about here and that means Rosh Hashanah is just around the corner. The kids will almost certainly bring flimsy plastic honey dishes home from school that you want to figure out how to avoid using (“Let’s keep it clean, so we don’t mess it up!”) and you definitely do not need more of those hanging around. This is neater and more personal project that you can use to decorate your table while helping your guests find their seats.

While you can stick to authentic apple colors, there is no reason you need to! Especially for the youngest artists, scribbling in multi-colors will just make these look more fun. I think I prefer the colorful ones!  You could also crumple small pieces of tissue paper in red, green and yellow and glue them to the apples for added dimension. Or use pompoms in place of tissue paper in a rainbow of colors!

full sheet

I printed my cards on regular paper since my printer can be stubborn about printing on card stock but if your printer can handle it or if you are drawing the apples yourself, I recommend a heavier weight paper so that the place cards will stand up nicely, especially if you are gluing on any decorations. You can download the template here.

 

Pop-up Apple Place Cards

Time:
Active: 30 minutes, depending on how many you make
Drying: 15 minutes+ if using paint or glue

Age: 2-9

Materials:
Paper or place card template
Something with which to decorate the paper – paint, markers, crayons, tissue paper, pompoms, etc.
Scissors
Glue if needed

Process:
Draw your apple outlines on a card of your own size choice, or download and print ours. I sized them so they fit six on a page.

Decorate in any way you want. We just used markers.

When they are decorated, cut the cards into individual pieces. Fold each card in half.

folded

Cut out the shape of the apple on the top part of the card only! This proved to be a bit tricky for the leaf and stem so I suggest helping out younger children.

cutting

Add names below the apple and place one at each seat at your table.

Did you do this project? Share your pictures on our facebook page!

Waterproof Sukkah Decorations Round-up

Get an early jump on Sukkah decorations!

If your last week of summer involves lots of googling “fun things to do with kids,” then take a few minutes to check out some Sukkah decoration ideas! Your future self will thank you. I scoured the web for waterproof decorations, so you don’t end up with a pile of soggy chains decorating your sukkah floor.

Plastic Bottle Flowers

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Straw Bunting
straw bunting
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Straw and Bead Stars
bead stars
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Straw and Bead Necklaces
Make long strings of these and hang as chains!
straw and bead necklace
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Pool Noodle Garland
noodle41
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Melted Bead Suncatcher
Even though she says the beads did not ruin her baking tins, I would probably use disposable ones!
bead suncatcher
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Plastic Dish Flowers
I would use disposable plastic plates and bowls in different colors. Punch a hole in the top and hang down the walls
plate art copy
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Glue Pictures
glue pics
Did you do any of these projects? Share your pictures on our facebook page!

The Well-Stocked Art Supply Bin

Restock your art supplies during the back to school sales!

school-supplies

I always loved back to school shopping. All those fancy pens and glittery folders made both walking to aisles and later using the supplies fun. This is the first year my daughter needs supplies and I was sad to see that the list instructs us as to the color of all the folders, and that all the pencils, markers, etc. are placed in bins for general use, so splurging on fancy ones will be a waste. I still might decide to get her one fancy pencil to keep for her personal use!

With all the back to school supplies sales however, this is the perfect time of year to restock your basic art supplies. As you may have noticed if you have been following me here, I tend towards using very basic supplies, so many of them will be on sale! Kosher on a Budget is my go-to source for the best prices. She posts a weekly round-up of the best school supplies deals each week. Here is a list of what I consider “essential” and a second list of “extras.”

“Essentials”
Construction paper
Glue (glue sticks do not work well in my opinion, even if they are neater!)
Kid-friendly scissors
Crayons
Markers
Washable acrylic paint
Watercolor paint
Paint brushes
Clear tape
Masking tape

“Extras”
Textured or patterned papers
Sequins and jewels
Pom poms
Pipe cleaners
Paper fasteners
Dot paints (we will the “Do A Dot brand)
Glue gun

Rebuilding Yerushalayim (in paper)

Use paper to create your own version of Yerushalayim on Tisha B’av.

yerushalayim

Tisha B’av marks the saddest day on the Jewish calendar. It is also one of the hardest days to be a parent. You don’t have the luxury of spending the day in shul and then taking a long nap. There are small people waiting to be fed and want you to play with them. Additionally, you want to convey some sense of the day to them, just as you would with any other holiday, but in an age appropriate way.

I am always on the lookout for Tisha B’av projects that relate to the day. One that you can do even with small kids is building a paper Yerushalayim. You can cut out the shapes in advance or have older kids cut their own shapes. Then let them mix and match and create their own Yerushalayim. Show the kids how to layer the shapes to show dimension, so some buildings are close up and some are further away.

You can add in print-outs of friends or family living in Israel, or the kids themselves. We used plain construction paper but any type of textured or shiny gold paper would add an extra dimension here. Print out close ups of Jerusalem stone to add in as “bricks” or buildings. You could do a Kotel scene, or any other place in Israel that has meaning to you and your kids.

We hope that by next year, we will already see the real rebuilt Yerushalayim!

 

Building Yerushalayim

Time:
Active: 30 minutes, depending on involved you get

Age: 2-8

Materials:
Construction or any other kind of colored or textured paper
Glue
Scissors

Process:
Cut out a variety of shapes. We mainly used squares, rectangles and domes, with a triangle for the sun and some bird shapes but really almost anything will work.

 

supplies

Arrange the pieces on a sheet of paper. Layer pieces to create a full city with depth. Once you have arranged the pieces to your satisfaction, glue them down.

Did you do this project? Share your pictures on our facebook page!