4 Benefits of Crafting With Kids and Crafts They Will Love

December 09, 2022

Kids hugging at the craft table

Kids of all ages, even mums and dads, love to craft. There’s joy in being creative that isn’t a project to hand in to a teacher or a job the boss expects done yesterday. We can do something that interests us and there’s no one there to grade us or tell us it needs to be redone. Crafting is something we do for ourselves and perhaps that’s what makes it so much fun.

When it comes to crafting with foster kids, there are so many benefits of crafting and at this time in their lives, that’s just what they need. Crafting is something that will be rewarding to take their minds off the many things in life that are confusing for them. So then, how can crafting benefit them and what crafts will they love doing? Those are very good questions, so let’s see what we’ve found.

1. A Way to Manage Their Emotions Through Self-Expression

If there is anything at all that foster care agencies can tell us about the children who cross their doors it would be that many of these kids are afraid to express their feelings. Perhaps it’s because they’ve been taken from the home they were comfortable in, even if not exactly safe. It’s the only life they’ve known and are now in a world of the unknown.

Many foster kids are afraid to tell you what they are thinking or feeling for fear of being misunderstood. Crafting can take them beyond the ‘logical’ thought process into a world where they can express how they are really feeling.

The best crafts for self-expression are drawing and painting. In fact, many child psychologists work with these crafts to begin understanding what is going on inside that child they are trying to understand. What better way is there to ‘tell’ a kid that it’s okay to express themselves than with something they already love to do? Give them a set of water colours and washable markers and let them go to town. You won’t have any problem here in getting them to communicate with a craft they enjoy so much!

2. A Lesson in Patience They Can Apply to Their Lives

Most kids are impatient beings. What they want, they want now, and will do just about anything to get their way. Unfortunately, in the foster care system, there isn’t much they can do to bring mum and dad home. That’s something their parents need to work through, so certain crafts that teach them patience can often help them understand waiting is not always a bad thing.

Crafts like building models and working with toothpicks take a lot of patience. Have you ever seen a castle created from gluing tooth picks together? Not only are they a sight to behold but there is no way a kid can complete one in a single day. It will take patience and perseverance, but they won’t mind so much. After all, their patient placement of each and every toothpick is finally beginning to take shape.

3. Crafting Gives Them a Sense of Accomplishment

Then there is the fact that so many kids feel helpless in the situation they are now in. There is nothing they can do to bring their family back together, but they can do something about the craft that sits before them. They can experience joy and a sense of fulfilment when the project is finally brought to completion. Kids will learn that this is something they can do that is now a ‘work of art.’

Crafts to help kids gain a sense of accomplishment are those that can’t be completed at just one go. Paint by number kits are an amazing way to help kids see what it means to follow a chart in logical progression. While colour by number kits are not always practical with smaller kids, most kids over the age of 6 or 7 can work through them until that last colour has been painted in. What a sense of accomplishment that is!

4. The Ability to Take Their Minds Off Everything Else – Concentration

Some children have trouble adjusting to the life in which they now find themselves. Their every waking moment can be taken up with thoughts of home and their parents. If there is one thing many people are confused with, it would be just how some of the most abused children remember their family life as idealistic – something they long to return to. Often, no matter what caused their parents to keep them in conditions that weren’t entirely safe, they did love their children and would express that love regularly.

Crafts that require extreme amounts of concentration and are fun to do can work well for kids who simply can’t stop worrying about their parents and whether they will ever get to go back home. Projects like building models and stick castles mentioned above help kids to focus more on what is in front of them than what they have left behind.

Crafting Is Therapeutic

In the end, there is something therapeutic about crafting. Psychiatrists and psychologists have used crafts as a form of therapy for as long as anyone can remember. Basketry, for example, was commonly used in psychiatric wards because it was something patients loved to do and kept their hands and minds busy.

Sessions often used those baskets as a place where patients could place their fears and troubles in. They were used as a method we now call guided imagery and that is something you can do with your foster kids today. While not necessarily a basket they’ve woven, you might be able to help them craft a place where they can leave their worries behind.

There may even come a point where kids become able to express themselves in conversation with you, so that you can help them through what is bothering them. Crafting, if nothing else, is a form of expression and that’s just what many of these kids really need. Give them an outlet and see just how much fun they have releasing all those pent-up emotions inside.

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About Me

About [span]me[/span]
Hello, I'm Lorita. Hoping to inspire you to explore and create things that make life a bit more fun and beautiful.