This little Christmas craft is featured in my book, Nature Crafts with Common Plants. It’s a really simple but fun (& cheap!) craft to do with a class or group of kids, or your own child. The trunk of the tree is a pop stick and I’ve collected some different sized twigs to use for branches. While you could use a larger twig as the trunk, the flatness of a pop stick makes it easier to stick the twig branches on. PVA or any other craft glue works fine. I’ve added a string so it can be hung up, and I’ve glued on a Crepe Myrtle pod as a star on top.
Festival of Children’s Books
I’ll be hosting a nature craft activity, there will be a variety of author talks, and heaps of books for sale from Shakespeares Bookshop.
I met Charlie and lots of other lovely kids and families at my local Australian Plants Society sale in Adelaide over the weekend. We had loads of native seedpods to choose from, and it was fabulous to see so many children (and some adults!) completely engaged with creating their own unique seedpod creatures using their imaginations and a trusty low-melt glue gun! Head outside, collect some bits and pieces and have a go yourself!
Here are some other creations:
This is super easy, so great for a class of really young kids. You can make a template of the swan shape for them to draw around, then cut out.
Use a black texta to draw on an eye and colour in the beak.
Glue on leaves for feathers, using whatever leaves you have around. Done!
Paper plates with the middle cut out make a perfect base for a wreath. And they’re cheap & easy if you’re working with a whole class of young kids. Head outside so the kids can collect some natural materials. I’ve glued on gum leaves, gum blossom and gumnuts to give it a very Aussie touch, but just use whatever plants are available. A very simple yet effective nature craft activity!
Here’s another easy Christmas nature craft which kids love. Collect some large gumnuts for the body and sheoak pods to make the head. Small twigs can be used for the antlers and legs. Glue them together with a low-melt glue gun to form a little reindeer. Add plastic eyes and a Coral Gum cap for the nose, which can be painted red to turn it into Rudolph.
Encourage children to pick some flowers and leaves and arrange them on the ground to create their own unique little character.
Explain that sometimes the most beautiful things aren’t permanent, eg. flowers and sunsets, but if we want to, we can capture them with photographs.
Sometimes called ephemeral art, this style of using natural materials has been used by famous British artist and sculptor Andy Goldsworthy.
“Gumnut Babies” originated in the creative mind of iconic English-Australian author & illustrator May Gibbs. “Snugglepot and Cuddlepie” are her most famous characters.
These are my version, made using large gumnuts for the bodies, sheoak pods for the heads, and fresh gum blossom for the hats. The little one on the left has a gumnut cap with wattle glued around it.
I’ve added little plastic eyes, and put them together using a handy dandy low melt glue gun. Easy!
Coral Gum (Eucalyptus torquata) is a native of Western Australia and used as a hardy street tree in dry climates. Look on the ground under them when in blossom and you’ll find hundreds of dainty little flower caps.
Collect some caps, dry them out for a couple of days, then snap or cut off the tips. Thread them like beads to create a bracelet or necklace. This is a lovely mindful nature craft activity for kids, which adults enjoy it too!