Valentine’s Day held rock star status in my childhood. Of course, it involved paper and scissors and glue (a stationery designer’s dream) and then getting 27 different cards right back from my classmates. I am hoping Zilla will follow in Designing Mom Erika and her son’s footsteps. Her son, S, made every single one of his cards by hand and will surely have all the girls swooning…
Last weekend S and I spent a gloomy afternoon making Valentine’s Day cards for his first grade classmates. There are 20+ kids in his class, plus he needed to make cards for his teachers. I knew it had potential to be an overwhelming task for us both. Normally when we do crafts, S shares the responsibility of setting up supplies and cleaning up. But I thought hand writing 25 cards was task enough, so I did all the prep work and clean up for him to help things go smoothly.
In the morning, I gathered up all the supplies I could think of: pink, red, white and purple construction paper, scissors, stickers, markers, crayons, ribbon, tape, envelopes, heart doilies, glue and punches, so he had anything he wanted right in front of him. After lunch we sat down together for “craft day.”
I let S choose from all the supplies and make the cards however he liked. As someone who makes a living being creative, it was difficult to let go and just let him design the cards all on his own. I admit that in my head I was thinking “pick the heart doilies, pick the heart doilies!” Alas, he chose puffy foam stickers as his main graphic element.
I helped out by cutting the paper to the right size to fit in the envelopes, but otherwise he did it all himself. We took plenty of breaks, so it took about three hours to get through 25 cards, but we had a great time. S is super excited to share the cards with his classmates, and I’m really proud of him for writing 25 cards all by himself.
Here are a few quick tips for a smooth Valentine’s Day Card making session with your little one:
— Have the class roster at hand (don’t forget the teachers) so nobody gets left out
— Gather all the supplies for your child, and put them all within reach
— Skip messy supplies, like glitter, if you know you don’t have time or patience for clean up
— If your child gets frustrated or tired, take a break and come back later
— Sit with your child the entire time and keep the tv, phone, and computer switched off
— Help with some of the prep work by being your child’s assistant (i.e. cut the paper to size, help him mark off the class roster, or add dots of glue)
— Make a few simple cards yourself, so your child can copy your techniques if they’re stuck on what to do
— Offer to do most of the clean up for your little one
Hope everyone has a fun Valentine’s Day! Happy crafting.