Updated: Nov 30, 2019
I recently discovered pipe cleaners.
I mean, obviously I've always "known" about them, but recently I really discovered how magical they can be.
A quick Pinterest search can open your world to zillions of in depth pipe cleaner crafts and cute ideas for when you want to be Supermom. Lets be honest, though. I'm not looking to be Supermom right now. I just want 5 minutes of peace so I can start prepping dinner or through a load of clothes in the washer. I don't want to spend 10 minutes finding the googly eyes, the safety scissors, the liquid glue (AND the glue stick, since the kids are different ages), and then of course they're want the glitter and you have to lay down the newspaper to keep the table clean....
No. Just no.
I just want to grab something non-electronic and hand it to them. As I rifled through their multiple bins of craft crap I found the pipe cleaners. I grabbed my phone and quickly started searching for "pipe cleaner crafts". I gave the kids each a couple pipe cleaners while I scrolled through. And then I realized... that's all they needed.
They didn't care about adding eyeballs or gluing them together. They didn't need instructions on how to make tiny animals or holiday themed items. They just wanted to bend them and twist them and try to make circles.
I challenged my 5 year old to make different letters and numbers. I showed my 2 year old a square and told her to try to make one. They quickly made it obvious they didn't want my help. I was able to get their lunches ready, put the dishes away, and even have a few silent moments to enjoy my coffee.
- I showed my 5 year old how to bend one around his finger and slide it off so it would like a snake. He decided to leave it on his finger to be worn like a ring. I then, obviously, had to give him 9 more. He needed a bit of help making a bracelet and necklace, but I think he'll get it next time.
- If your child doesn't know their letters/numbers/shapes, try printing them out for your child(ren) to see.
- Sometimes the ends can be sharp or they might be able to pull the fluff out if they try hard. Make sure to keep half an eye on them.