When the weather isn’t quite warm enough to get the kids outside to admire the wide world of insects firsthand, making a creative bug craft might be the next best thing. Gather inspiration from books, the internet, or your little ones’ imaginations, then set out some supplies and encourage their creativity. An insect crafting-session can easily transition into lessons on the world's ecosystems, the diversity of species, or even climate change, so don’t hesitate to teach and discuss while crafting. Glance through the list below; from butterflies to spiders, there’s a project here to satisfy every kid’s own unique insect interests.
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Paper Chain Caterpillar
Give the tried-and-true construction paper chain an update by adding a cute caterpillar face. Challenge your little ones to create the longest crawling caterpillar they possibly can for a full afternoon of crafting. Don’t forget a pair of expressive googly eyes and curly antennae, of course.
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Paper Plate Insect Sewing Project
This cute paper plate craft is a great fit for kids interested in sewing or needlework. By stitching with pre-punched holes, thick yarn, and a plastic needle, this is a safe entry point for younger crafters, while still allowing them to practice their stitches in a fun, unique way.
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Painted Ladybug Rocks
After a morning of collecting smooth rocks, bring the little ones inside for a crafternoon. A layer of colorful paint and a few polka dots transform each stone into a cute ladybug, but kids can definitely get more creative and paint a honeybee or firefly, too.
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Egg Carton Snail
Every snail needs a shell, so encourage children to design their own using the contents of your recycling bin. Egg cartons work well (and can be painted easily), but don’t dismiss plastic bottles, lids, or any other salvageable snail "shells." Just be sure to leave any tricky scissor cuts to the adults on this one.Continue to 5 of 10 below.
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Sponge Painted Butterfly
Break out the ubiquitous craft sticks, pipe cleaners, and construction paper to build a colorful butterfly with your kids. While abstract sponge painting is fun and lovely, challenge older kids to recreate patterns from butterflies they’ve spotted in the wild (or in books).
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Yarn Spider Craft
Making these adorable little yarn spiders can help assuage anyone’s arachnophobia--they’re just that cute. Take them to the next level by gluing on a full set of eight eyes (as opposed to just a pair), and use the opportunity to teach kids a little about the diverse world of bugs while you’re at it.
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Paper Polka Dot Bug Craft
A few clever folds turn this otherwise ordinary papercraft into a three-dimensional insect sculpture. A few springy legs (try sturdy card stock or craft wire) and googly eyes bring these from art project to action figure, so be sure to make plenty of critters for an especially imaginative playtime.Continue to 9 of 10 below.
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Wooden Bumble Bee
Because this simple craft uses balsa wood as its base, it’ll last way longer than a plain papercraft. Use them to decorate a kids’ room or art nook; they’ll bring a fun sense of whimsy and a pop of color to any space.
Pro Tip: Affix bumblebees to the wall with a bit of sticky tack; the balsa wood is light enough to stay put and you won’t need to put a permanent hole in your wall.