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While nothing can replace the excitement of playing with gulaal and pichkaris, there are so many other ways to celebrate Holi with your child. The festival of colour is a great opportunity to involve your child in DIY arts and crafts activities, and let their creativity shine.
Of all the times we tell our children not to scribble on walls or doodle on their clothes, perhaps Holi could be the one exception. Make this Holi a YES-day for your child!
The festival of colour lends itself so beautifully to so many joyous ways for your child to explore their creativity. We’ve handpicked these six arts and crafts activities for your child to explore this Holi.
The inevitable fallout of any holi celebrations are the clothes! More often than not, the t-shirts are simply discarded or at the most, repurposed as rags.
Well, why not teach your child something about upcycling via these tremendously fun and engaging activities. Depending on your child’s age and personality, there are so many options to choose from.
Does your child like wearing their personality on their sleeve? Then they would love to “redecorate” their spoiled or old t-shirts with these dimensional fabric paints, perfect for drawing, doodling and creating words.
If your child loves to marry creativity with bright, happy colours to create something new, there’s nothing quite like playing and experimenting with Tie-Dye. It can serve as a great weekend group activity. Ideal for children aged 7 years and up; however, they would need assistance and supervision, especially if this is their first time.
Finger Painting Fun
Children too young for tie-dye kits have no reason to miss out on the fun of playing with fabrics. Instead, they can experience the joy of finger-painting on fabrics. It’s a super easy activity for children as young as three, and gives them lots of scope for playful creativity.
Moreover, experts emphasise on the importance of finger painting as a way to enhance brain and body coordination and develop essential motor skills.
All the colours used in the kits are nontoxic, machine washable, and easy to wash off the skin.
How about making a colourful, bright mess for Holi? Ideal for children above six years of age, this group activity helps your child follow instructions and instil independence. First things first, let’s take the mess to your child’s workbench or designated play area. Line the area with newspapers to contain the mess.
Take a thick drawing paper or a cardstock paper and fold it in half to create a well-defined crease. Let your child mix and blend non-toxic watercolours with water on a palette. Put a few blobs of the colours on one half of the paper using fingers or paintbrush, and ask your little one to copy. Once they are happy with the blobs, let your little one fold the other half of paper over the paint and press it down with their hands. Open the sheet to reveal the beautiful patterns of the smushed up paint.
If you and your little one are feeling adventurous, you can also add a long string between the paper before smushing and pull it out slowly after the paper is folded. The results are beyoootiful!
If you haven’t already tried this, making an easy pichkari could be a fun Holi tradition in your household. Best for all children above three years of age, this activity helps your child understand basic physics and upcycling everyday things, along with encouraging independence in them.
Here are the items you need: a balloon, non-toxic glue, a toilet/kitchen paper roll, a pair of scissors, a sheet of craft paper, and some colours. (Read in bold: Make sure only you handle the pair of scissors, for safety reasons.) You will need to create a pichkari yourself and encourage your child to model you through each step.
Cut a hole at the top of the balloon and tie its lip tight. Put the cut end of the balloon on the roll. Time to decorate! On a small sheet of craft paper, sketch and colour as you and your little one wish. We love our oil pastels and colour-changing markers for this. When you’re done, stick it onto the pichkari.
The DIY pichkari is ready, time to test it out!
Put non-toxic colours in the open end of the pichkari. Pull the lip of the balloon at the other end. Release. On that note, we hereby acknowledge that we approve of the mess.
It is every parents’ nightmare to find their beautiful walls sketched/painted on by their Picasso toddler. But you don’t have to inhibit your kid’s creativity by forbidding them from going near another wall, especially when it’s time to celebrate the ultimate festival of colours!
Just stick a drawing paper roll on the walls of your little one’s play area. Or better yet, cover your child’s bedroom walls with this infinite colouring roll! Do make sure they can comfortably reach the colouring area. Hand them some mess-free paint sticks (like Chunkies Paint Sticks from OOLY) and let them express their creativity on this giant canvas!
You could also encourage your little one to draw and doodle on mirrors or glass-top tables with these gel crayons. Cleaning up afterwards can be an activity to wind up playtime.
What better time to introduce your child to the mythology behind the festival of colours than this.
Before you bring out the big pichkaris and colours, download a few Holi-themed colouring sheets from good ol’ Google, and grab some high-quality wax crayons (Color Appeel Crayons Set is our favourite).
As your child gets colouring, dive into age-appropriate details about Holi.
Colouring inside the lines is entirely optional! Even your three-year-old child can dip into this simple activity.
Some water-based colours and a straw is all that your child needs to create some wonderfully pretty Holi-themed greeting cards. It’s a quick and easy activity with very satisfying results – great for children who lack patience.
If your child finds watercolours a challenging medium, get them started with these mechanical watercolour pencils (for six years and above) or metallic gel crayons (for three years and above). They can just colour along on a piece of paper, shake droplets of water on it, and then blow through a straw to blend the colours.
As you and your little one dive colour-first into Holi, let us warn you to lower all your expectations. Things might not always go your way. Embrace the mess and remember to have fun.