through the looking glass








At home we have a floor length window and the Bean loves nothing more than standing at it and watching the world outside (particularly birds and cars!). So I thought we would make a craft that would give him something new to look at.

suitable age: 15 months +

materials needed:

  • clear contact ( easily bought at the newsagent, supermarket, big chain stores or stationary shops)
  • tissue paper, cellophane or wrapping paper in several different colours
  • scissors (adult use only and are optional)
  • sticky tape
  • cookie cutters (optional)
Cut out a square of contact (size is up to you) and peel off the baking paper and lay it down on the table, or onto a window ( if you have a floor length one). You might want to stick down the corners with sticky tape or blu-tak just so it won’t move around. You can either cut up the paper into shapes or let your little one help you to rip it up (much more fun!). Then simply scatter or place the paper over half of the sticky side of the contact and then fold in half so that the paper is sandwiched inside the contact. If you like, you can then cut your stained glass window into shapes (hearts and stars are nice – you can use cookie cutters as a template) to make pretty decorations for a party or special occasion.
At first we attempted this on the table and the Bean wasn’t quite sure of what to make of it. But as soon as I taped the contact onto the window instead he immediately got into the swing of things and thoroughly enjoyed sticking on the pieces of paper. He was especially intrigued by the feel of the contact! After I had cut them up into shapes, I then used some sticky tape (rolled into a ball) to stick them onto the window and he happily took them on and off until the tape lost its stickiness! It looked very pretty and I would like to make these as Christmas decorations by hole punching them and threading through some string or fishing line. 


My little one LOVES spaghetti( actually the only food he doesn’t love is tuna). Anyway, he likes to slurp it, hold it up and let it fall onto his high chair table, and throw it on the floor (it makes a very satisfying splat). So, once again we’re combining his love of food with craft! Basically you use cooked spaghetti to make a collage. Very easy and great sensory (and tasty) play as well. If you don’t want make glue, clag is fine.

age suitable for: 1+

You will need:

  • 1 x sheet of coloured paper or a roll of brown paper (both available from the newsagent)
  • 1 tablespoon of cornflour
  • 1-3 tablespoons of water (depends on how runny you like the glue to be)
  • plastic cup or container
  • large paintbrush
  • spaghetti
  • saucepan
  • food dye (optional) – will stain hands for a day or two or you could add 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • small plastic bowl
  • newspaper
cook a small amount of spaghetti for about 10 minutes with 3-4 drops of food dye or turmeric (if using) in the saucepan. Drain and cool then place in the plastic bowl. To make some glue, mix the cornflour and the water in the plastic cup with the paintbrush. Apply glue all over your sheet of paper and then let them throw or drop the spaghetti onto the paper. Make sure you place plenty of newspaper under their table or high chair to make cleaning up easy peasy 🙂
The Bean had a lot of fun with this one! he especially enjoyed throwing the spaghetti and continued to play with it and the bowl after we had finished. It was a quick activity, so good for days when you just want something short and sweet. I found that a little bit of diluted lemon juice mixed with soap did a great job at getting the stains off his little hands.

bring a plate

We get a lot of junk mail at our place. Not just a few things a week, but at least 3-4 a day! It has its uses though. We don’t usually buy newspapers anymore ( don’t have the time to read them) so it has been handy for art and craft to cover the table with and it’s great to put under the Bean’s highchair as he is a very messy eater. But, looking at the ever-growing pile the other day, i thought about how else i could put it to good use (apart from putting it in the recycle bin).

The Bean LOVES food. If you are eating something he wants it too. So, keeping in mind how much he also enjoyed making a collage the other week, I though I would combine the two. This is a great craft for older children as well as you can incorporate teaching them about nutrition, different kinds of food and even use it for imaginative play.

You will need:

  • supermarket catalogues
  • paper plates
  • 1 tbs plain flour or rice flour
  • 4 tbs water
  • large paintbrush
  • jar or plastic cup
  • scissors ( for an adult to use only)
  • (optional) clear contact – for older kids who want to use their plates for imaginative play.
Cut out pictures of different kinds of food. You don’t need to be neat in cutting ( I’m terrible at it). You could have a theme – such as fruit salad or favourite food. Combine the flour and water in your jar to make glue.
The Bean really enjoyed using the paintbrush this time around and also had fun putting his fingers into the glue and tasting it! He was more interested in looking at the different pictures then placing them on to the plate and needed a little encouragement to do so. Once it had dried, we sat down together and i named all of the different types of fruit as well as the colours.
For older children who want to use their plates for play, simply cover the plate (once dry) with a sheet of clear contact cut to the size of the plate.