Kids’ Imaginations at Play: A Simple Craft for Kids

by Lisa Renata on February 3, 2011 · 8 comments

in guest-posts, preschoolers

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Kids Making Crafts

I’m currently on maternity leave: The following is a guest post by Lisa Renata.

Kids’ imaginations are endless. One day they can be a super hero rescuing the world from evil, another day they can be a  dog looking for treats or a little petting. The joy of childhood. Simple, yet fun. Unfortunately, in today’s society there is little room left for imagination. Kids are constantly entertained by the television, video games or the ever endless amount of electronic toys they have. There really isn’t much room left for them to imagine or to create.

As parents we play a big part as to how much of our child’s imagination is active.  We can do this by limiting them to the amount of television they watch and video games they play, as well as by surrounding them with toys that allow for that creative part in them to come out and explore. Wooden blocks, costumes, puppets, paints, and crafts are just a few examples.

There have been more than enough studies done on the benefits of exposing children to the arts.  This does not mean you have to be a Picasso to be able to show your chiquito how to be creative.  Just give them a piece of blank paper, some crayons or markers (or if you’re a little more daring, paint) and listo –  set them free to just be.  The simplest crafts are usually the ones that allow for more imagination.

Crafts also need not be expensive.  Just look around at what you have at home.  In our home we keep a basket full of recyclable items that can be used for crafts.  Empty toilet paper rolls can become a telescope; empty egg cartons can become an art pallet or even a caterpillar. Gift wrap tissue paper saved from the trash, can be perfect to tear apart and glue on to construction paper, or it can be turned into flowers.  Empty cans like the chocomilk or oat meal ones, once decorated, can become great for storing colored pencils, crayons or other little special somethings.  If you have enough cans, they are also great to use for stacking and making towers.  Foil paper can become fun accessories for that special little princesa or a crown for the principe azul.  The possibilities are endless.  Take a step back and look around your house, you’ll be surprised as to all the great things you already have and can use.

Here is a simple kid’s craft to get you started.

How to Make a Treasure Box (Caja de Tesoros) – Kids Craft Activity

What you’ll need:

  • An old shoe box (any size)
  • Scraps of colored paper (I save all my scrapbook scraps, but you can also use colorful magazine pages, newspaper funnies or old gift wrap tissue.)
  • A paint brush (or fingers)
  • White glue (I like to water mine down for paper projects. Or you can make your own glue at home.  Here is a great easy recipe.)
  • A cup or mug to use for the glue

Tear or cut all the paper scraps into small pieces.  They don’t need to be perfect, in fact, the more variety in sizes, the nicer the end result will look.  This is also really fun for the little ones to help you do.


Set the glue, pieces of scrap paper, and shoe box on the table.  Hand the paint brush to your little artist and let them start gluing the scraps of paper on to the box.  Guide them at first, by showing them how to brush the glue onto the box and then attach the paper.  It is okay if they overlap.  Set them free to do it all on their own.

Treasure Box Activity - Gluing Paper

Once your little artist is done and the glue is dry, cut any excess pieces of paper sticking out.

Treasure Box Kids Craft

If your chiquito knows how to write, let him write his name or first initial and then glue it onto the box.

Treasure Box - Caja de Tesoros Kids Activity

You are done!  A Caja de Tesoros to keep all those special little rocks, acorns, leaves, hotwheels, etc. that your chiquito finds.

Lisa has a passion for sewing, photography, crafts, and of course, cajeta. Through her blog, Sabor a Cajeta, she shares her passions and ideas with others while enjoying the sweet flavor of life. Visit Lisa’s Etsy shop to sample some of her handmade goodies.

All photos courtesy of Lisa Renata with the exception of top photo.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Roxana A. Soto February 4, 2011 at 5:30 pm

Perfecto! This sounds easy enough for someone with absolutely no craft skills like moi to take on with my children! Thank you so much for sharing, Lisa! My daughter is going to be soooo happy when I tell her we’re making a treasure box, as she’s fascinated with pirates and anything related to treasures and hiding stuff and then finding it makes her the happiest little girl in the world. Gracias!


modernmami February 4, 2011 at 6:00 pm

I agree with you, Roxana! This activity seems simple enough for people like
me that don’t have craft skills! Glad you enjoyed Lisa’s post and have fun
creating a box with your daughter.


Angelica Perez-Litwin February 4, 2011 at 7:41 pm

My 4 year old girl (soon to be 5) is now getting into sewing. We just got some children’s needles and materials to makes a few items. I know she’ll love doing this treasure box…it looks simple and fun, and its practical. Very beautiful…gracias Lisa and Melanie!


modernmami February 10, 2011 at 3:24 pm

Children’s needles, huh? I should get my daughter some since she was asking the other day about learning to sew. I’ll have to send her to abuela, though, cause I can’t sew!!!


Ana L. Flores February 4, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Yay! Something I can do with my girl this weekend! She´s totally into cutting, pasting and painting right it´s perfect. Thanks!


modernmami February 10, 2011 at 3:24 pm

So simple and perfect for them, right?


Anonymous February 8, 2011 at 8:32 am

It’s nice to have an specific project to make with the kids. I have materials available but we always get tired of same old, stickers and crayons, y eso que yo soy la creativa de la casa!!! But been a designer I can’t make a simple project at home, it has to be perfectly thought-of so I end up doing stickers and crayons! I’ll definitely try the treasure box!! Excellent idea Lisa!!


modernmami February 10, 2011 at 3:24 pm

jaja It’s a blessing & a curse to be creative, isn’t it? My husband goes through the same thing…


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