It’s finally warming up in my corner of the world, so it seemed fitting to bring a bit of sunshine indoors with this fun & easy sun craft for kids!
This sun craft for kids is an easier, yet still colorful twist on a traditional God’s Eye craft, helping children fine-tune their fine motor skills with its weaving and beading action, while avoiding the need for constant teacher assistance with tying in new colors of yarn. We’ve been on a bit of a weaving craft streak since making our Rainbow Paper Plate Loom earlier this Spring, and I love the focus that weaving brings out in children.
Of course, you could still provide different colors of yarn for children if your class is capable of tying knots and can tie in those new colors independently, but I think the beads do a good job of adding in extra color without as much frustration. Children still get some knot tying opportunities at the beginning and end of the craft if they’re up for the challenge.
Materials to Make the Sun Craft
- 3ft length yarn in yellow or orange – one end taped for easy bead stringing
- 4 popsicle sticks, sun colors (multi-color packs are great to always have on hand!)
- 16-24 pony beads, sun colors
These materials are perfect for the classroom because they can be purchased in bulk and are very low cost. The pony beads come in giant packs and can be used in so many different crafts or learning activities, while the popsicle sticks can be purchased already painted and also have so many uses (they make great counting tools).
Making the Sun Craft
Teachers: to make things easier, prepare the popsicle stick “stars” before craft time. Use hot glue to attach two sticks in a cross shape, and then angle an additional stick on top and one underneath. If your children are not yet able to tie the first knot (securing the yarn to the frame) you can also do this step ahead of time. Also – make sure to tape the ends of the yarn like a shoelace to prevent the yarn from fraying as the children are lacing the beads on.
Tie the yarn to the popsicle stick frame. Twist the yarn over the center of the frame, crossing the center several times to cover up the center of the frame with yarn. When the kids feel like the centers are adequately covered, have them add a single bead to their yarn, pull it down to where they want it on the frame, and then secure it by looping the yarn around the same stick or a neighboring stick.
Encourage the children to explore patterning with their beads, if they are interested. Keeping the yarn secure but not pulling it too tight is an exercise in control that the children will learn to self-correct through the craft. Remembering to loop after threading on a bead is also an exercise in paying attention and focusing on their work – but this craft is also very forgiving, so it is engaging without being frustrating.
We also liked to add several lines of just weaving in between each circle of beads, but children really should feel free to make this craft their own – if they want to add only red beads, if they want to add only one bead per circle, or loop twice around each stick – let them! Experimenting with the crafting process is a great way to see how small details add up to a bigger result. Another nice thing with this craft is that children can easily undo a bit of their work and take a different approach if they don’t like how something turned out.
When the sun craft is complete, tie the end of the yarn to one of the beginning pieces on the back of the craft. Cut off the end of yarn with the bit of tape on it. You can optionally add an additional loop of yarn for hanging your sun crafts.
More Summer Fun
Looking for more summer fun for kids? Here are some of our favorite activities that you may want to give a try!
Ice Cream Shop Small World (with FREE printable)