by Catalogs.com Info Guru Kitty Price
The tween years can be a difficult time. Your kids are no longer children, but they’re not yet teenagers.
They may be experiencing a new middle school that’s much larger and farther away than their elementary school where they knew everyone. Making new friends is hard when they’re unsure of their own identity and just starting to develop their own likes and dislikes.
Many tweens need extra parental understanding and opportunities to excel. These great arts and craft kits are just the things to let your tweens express their creativity and create great personal belongings or gifts for family and friends, both old and new.
10. DIY Craft “Kits”
Sometimes the best craft kits aren’t kits at all. You probably have odds and ends tucked away in drawers, cabinets, or closets that would be perfect for your Tween’s do-it-yourself craft project. For instance, why not suggest she make an in-jean-ious pocket organizer to hang on her bedroom wall? All she’ll need are some old jeans with pockets she can cut around and legs to make the organizer’s backing; fabric scraps for hanging loops; fabric adhesive; ribbon and rick-rack scraps for trim; various buttons for decoration; a long wooden ruler for a hanging dowel; and some wire, string, or yarn to hang the whole thing.
9. Traditional Potholder Loom Kits
Remember when you were a kid and loved making those neat potholders for your mom? These loom kits are still available and offer hours of creativity for Tweens. When you run out of loops, just buy some more.
8. Paint-By-Number Kits
Bet you’ve done a paint-by-number picture sometime in your life, too. The best thing about these kits is that they come in a huge variety of sizes, subject matters, and levels of difficulty. You’re sure to find one that’s just right for your tweens, no matter what their ages. In addition, some of today’s kits have crayons or colored pencils instead of paint, making things a lot less messy for young tweens.
7. Diamond Dotz Art Kits
Have you ever heard of Diamond Dotz? This remarkable craft combines the look of embroidery with the ease of paint-by-numbers. Instead of paint, the picture is created with colorful little dots applied with a wax-tip stylus to various areas of a pre-printed fabric backing. There are numerous subject matters and difficulty level ranges from beginner to advanced. Your tweens will love creating their own beautiful masterpieces. If you’ve never seen one, there’s a demonstration video:
6. Kaleidoscope Kits
Yes, there really are kits that let your Tweens make their own kaleidoscopes! A cross between art project and construction task, these kits have everything needed to make a fully-functioning kaleidoscope: cardboard tubes; plastic mirror pieces; colorful beads, rhinestones, glitter, and confetti; and adhesive paper, all with complete instructions.
5. Penny Portrait Kits
You know that jar of old pennies that you’re never going to take to the bank because it’s not worth the effort when the result would be so little monetary value? Put those pennies to good use by letting your tweens create an amazing portrait of Abraham Lincoln using his own coins! These kits come with instructions telling which patina variations go where on the 18″ x 24″ poster that will certainly be worthy of framing when it’s finished. An educational booklet also teaches kids about our 16th president and the history of the penny. There’s even a genuine 1943 steel penny!
4. Color the Earth Kits
Give your tweens painless geography lessons by letting them create their own inflatable world globe. Kits come complete with a fabric-covered ball that inflates with a bicycle pump to a globe that’s 16″ in diameter. Once the world is ready for paint, tweens color in the preprinted country and ocean outlines with the included ink craft markers and mark the countries with included labels. Your kids may enjoy this craft project so much they’ll ask for a companion Color the Galaxy kit!
3. String Art Kits
String art is an amazing craft that tweens are sure to enjoy since the numerous kits available give them the opportunity to create frameable geometric designs, words, or pictures; dream weaver or Ojo de Dios (Eye of God) hangings; or objects like animals, birds, fish, trees, imaginary creatures, purses, pencil cases, pillows, hair ties, and scarves. Kits contain the necessary yarn or string, project boards or foam shapes, push pins to establish outlines around which they’ll wind the string or textured and colored yarn, and detailed instructions on how to do it.
2. Hot Wheels Kits
What boy doesn’t love Hot Wheels? Now your Tween sons can make their own Hot Wheels cars that really work! All they have to do is plug in the machine, wait for it to heat up, put in one of the molds, choose which colored wax stick they want, and insert it into the mold. The machine’s lights and sounds walk them through the entire process, including the cooling phase. Voila! Out comes their Hot Wheels body to attach to the included chassis. Then they get to decorate it with decals in the sticker pack.
1. Design Your Own Headphones Kits
The ultimate tween craft project, these kits let your kids create their own set of headphones as unique as their playlists. The included over-the-ears headphones are compatible with any device with a standard headphone jack. tweens use the bright “spritz” paints, craft markers, and self-adhesive paper stencils to create their unique work-of-art headphones that are sure to be the envy of all their friends.