When you discover a sale on cucumbers at the grocery store or simply have a few past their prime in your refrigerator, turn them into craft supplies. Using cucumbers to design eye-catching art projects can ignite your child’s imagination and creativity. Use age-appropriate craft ideas to ensure your child’s safety and get the best entertainment value and educational experience from each activity.
Turn cucumber slices into inexpensive stamps that your child can brush with washable paint and press onto paper. Create an educational craft for children who are still learning letters, numbers and shapes by cutting the cucumber into thin slices and using shaped cookie cutters to trim those into “stamps” of different shapes. The Savvy Source notes that your child can also use cucumber slices to create textured paintings. Children can use a piece of the cucumber as a “paintbrush” to fill in the outline of a letter, flower or holiday-related image.
Encourage your child’s creativity and healthy eating habits by letting her help you turn cucumber slices into edible images. Spoonful suggests creating cucumber flowers by arranging an assortment of cucumber slices into a flower shape and using a celery stalk as the stem. Your child can also turn cucumber slices into snowmen, bugs or snakes.
Help your preschool-age children design a cactus garden that you can use as a casual table centerpiece for a wild west-themed party or outdoor barbecue. Simply cut a cucumber in half the short way and place the pieces cut-side-down on a plate featuring a layer of cornmeal or breadcrumbs to simulate desert sand. Break toothpicks in half and push them into the cucumbers to mimic the look of a cactus’ spikes. Take precautions when breaking and inserting the toothpicks into the cucumbers, however. Crayola notes that you should not complete crafts featuring objects with sharp points with children under 4 years old.
In addition to taking safety precautions when using sharp objects, ensure your children know which crafts are edible and which are not. Don’t work on edible and non-edible crafts at the same time. This might prevent the children from thinking they can eat the painted cucumbers just like they ate the cucumber flowers. This will also help you avoid contamination since Crayola notes that craft materials such as paint should not be used on food that you plan to eat or come in contact with containers that will hold food that you plan to eat.