Don't spend a blah rainy day parked in front of the TV or chasing your bored toddler around wishing for the sun to come out again. Turn up your 2-year-old's creativity with a few fun-filled crafts. Just because the weather outside is frightful doesn't mean that your toddler can't have a completely delightful time indoors making everything from fantastic finger paintings to masterful mosaics.
Material choice is key when doing indoor crafts with your 2-year-old. You want to choose items that allow your youngster to express his creativity but don't damage the carpet or your furniture. Washable markers and paints are a safe bet, and glue sticks rather than bottled glue ensure that you don't have messy spills. Above all, make safety the most important consideration. Only use non-toxic materials that are age-appropriate (look on the label for the age grading). Scissors are acceptable for young children to use, but you should only allow your little artist to use plastic kids' safety scissors and only with supervision.
2. Finger Paint Party
Sure, finger painting outside is easier (you can simply hose off any mess), but it's entirely possible to do this type of project indoors. The first step is to make a mess-proof barrier. Cover your work surface with a few layers of newspaper, vinyl sheeting or even an old plastic shower curtain. Give your 2-year-old a rainbow of colors to choose from. Pour the paints on a paper plate, and let your little one go wild (under your complete supervision) making an abstract artistic masterpiece.
3. Mock Mosaic
While your 2-year-old isn't exactly ready to use grout and glass tiles to make a real mosaic, she can still create a mock version. Pre-cut faux tiles from card stock paper. Make dime-sized shapes in a rainbow of colors or pick themed hues (such as red and green for Christmas). Help your toddler to squeeze a quarter-sized pool of clear-drying school glue on a piece of paper, cardboard or even an unfinished wooden picture frame. Give her a thick paintbrush to spread out the glue. Before the glue dries, help her to stick the mock tiles down in rows.
4. Textured Glue Paint
Why always paint with paint? Your curious toddler is constantly exploring his environment, so let him explore with his senses by making a textured craft to see and feel. Switch up the traditional paint project, and use colored glue instead of tempera. Pour some school glue into a paper cup. Mix in a few drops of food coloring, and let your little one paint the glue across a piece of thick paper or cardboard. Give her colorful craft sand, glitter or even coarse salt to add on top for a bumpy texture that is fun to feel. Your toddler may not be ready yet to handle the sand or glitter dusting by herself. Help her to sprinkle these on her artwork, making sure that she keeps them far from her nose, eyes and mouth.