Thursday, January 20, 2011

Homemade Lace and Trace Activity *

     I enjoy making things for free or for cents on the dollar when I can, especially when the thing I am creating sells for a lot in a store. It's hard to find a good set of lace and trace shapes or animals or letters for a few bucks. And the nice thing about making them at home is that they can be customized to suit your child. So if your child likes dogs, you can do a whole set on dogs. Or if your child likes food, you can do a whole food items set. Or if your child is not picky you can keep it simple and basic. It's up to you and your child! :o) For supplies you will need scissors, cardboard of some kind, yarn or shoe laces, small clear tape, and a hole punch. If you are putting pictures on your cardboard then you will need print outs cut to the shape you want, glued onto the cardboard. You can use pieces of a cereal box, piece of a box, any cardboard you have will work.

     First, cut the cardboard into the shapes you want. Big shapes, little shapes, simple shapes, fancy shapes. There are a lot of options. I chose basically simple shapes for our starter lace ups. For this large triangle I varied the locations of the holes a bit. You can punch your holes close together or farther apart depending on your child's age and ability. Originally I punched the holes far apart and my daughter was done lacing it very quickly, so I added more holes for her.

     I kept the holes on the heart all in a row on the edge because the heart was really big. I varied my sizes of shapes for her and then matched up my yarn to the different sizes.

     I chose a bright red yarn for ours because it's bright and stands out on the cardboard. On each end I made a point by wrapping a piece of clear tape around it tightly. On one end you can tie a knot to keep it in place as well.

     Shoe laces also work great for this because the tip is already taken care of and they are pretty durable. You can get different lengths and colors as well.

     My daughter immediately went to work on all of our shapes. It took me less than 10 minutes to create for her. It's great to teach hand eye coordination and fine motor skills. And as my daughter said, she is "learning how to sew." :o) A basically free activity that will provide many hours of learning and amusement!