When my daughter was just a few weeks old, I carefully placed her pudgy hand in a puddle of paint before smushing it gently onto a piece of paper. I planned to do the same thing, year after year, until she turned eighteen. But that - along with my goal of yearly photo books - went right out the window somewhere around year two.
Still, I love handprint crafts because they - like my first clumsy attempt - serve as a permanent record of just how small my daughter once was.
This Canada Day, why not make a Canadian flag using your child’s handprints? Better yet, wrangle the entire family and have each member make a flag – or two – in different sizes. And when you’re done, you can take the pictures to your neighbourhood stationary store and have them laminated so you can use them as placemats and coasters for Canada Day barbeques - this year and for years to come.
To begin, you will need: some white paper (we cut 10” x 15” pieces of poster board for placemats and 4” x 4” pieces of poster board for coasters), red paint (we used tempera), a couple of paintbrushes, newspaper, lots of paper towels and a hand.
First, have your child paint two red stripes at the edge of the paper. Or, invite them to use their fingertips to fill in the spaces. My daughter chose the paintbrush.
Encourage your kiddo to dip the palm of one hand in red paint. Or, have them use a paintbrush to coat their hand instead.
The first handprint goes onto the middle of the paper – straight up and down.
You now have what looks like it might be a Canadian flag and so, you could leave the picture as is, or you can add more handprints.
After your kiddo gets more paint on his/her hand, turn the paper and have them place the next handprint facing right.
Continue with another handprint facing left and add a small line at the bottom of the prints, until you have what looks like this...
Meanwhile, your child can use the smaller pieces of paper to make coasters. The process is the same except instead of using handprints to create a maple leaf, your kids can use fingerprints. Dab, dab, dab.
And if you're looking for other great Canada Day crafts, look no further than these cool ideas on YMC.