Caring For Our Animals
by Betty Bose
During the colder months of the year it is fun to get the kids involved in projects that help animals in need. This can be done as a group activity or by a single child who wants to make a difference. Start out by thinking about the skill level of the children involved. It’s only fun and fulfilling if the kids come away feeling proud of their contribution.
Here are a few suggestions for you to consider:
A popular craft that kids of most ages can enjoy is making Bird Treats to hang from the trees. This one uses peanut butter, but you can substitute other products, like suet, if there is a peanut allergy concern. Hang the treats near a window so the kids can enjoy the various birds who come to enjoy their offering.
In a similar vein but a little more complicated is the Recycled Can Rope Birdfeeder. This craft requires adult supervision and is probably best used with older teens since you will be working with sharp can edges. This birdfeeder can be refilled for continued enjoyment.
Animal shelters are a great place to volunteer time and efforts. Don’t assume that everything that looks great to you will be acceptable to them. Check with them before starting on your project and run your idea past them to make sure the kids aren’t disappointed if their contribution isn’t accepted.
Cats love pillows and crinkly things so this easy to make Cat Pillow provides them with both of those pleasures. It is also a great project to teach the kids how to tie a simple knot. When working with animal shelters, be sure to bring along a camera and provide pictures to the local newspapers. Shelters need lots of publicity to make people aware of the wonderful cats and dogs that are available for adoption.
Please visit my blog artprojectsforkids.org to see my classroom-tested lesson plans. I'm happy to post them as an aid for teachers, homeschoolers, parents and enthusiasts of all ages.