A Rainy Day Survival Kit

A Rainy Day Survival Kit – From The Museum of Craft and Design

With the weather the way it’s been lately, parents everywhere need to be prepared for more indoor play! Put together a basic “Rainy Day Kit” and you’ll be ready when you hear anyone complain that they’re bored. Make sure your kit is age-appropriate, in terms of safety, washability, etc.

Basic Tools:

  • Scissors
  • Tape – regular and double-sided
  • Pencil, eraser, sharpener
  • Glue stick (best for sticking paper to paper)
  • White glue (best for gluing together 3D objects)
  • Hot glue gun + refill sticks (if your child is old enough and you can supervise)
  • Crayons/washable markers and/or Sharpies (depending on your child’s age, motor skills, impulse control)
  • Acrylic paints + bristle and sponge brushes

A container to store all this in! Plastic fishing-tackle boxes are great for this sort of thing, as are silverware caddies, desk organizers, or make-up cases from a thrift store. Daiso and other dollar stores often have bins with handles, which make these extra portable! However – a sturdy shoe box will do just as well. Pull together your tools first, so you’ll know how big of a container you’ll need, and leave room for further additions.

Basic Materials:

  • Paper – a box of scratch paper is GREAT to always keep on hand, as is a roll of paper (both Ikea and Costco have reasonably priced options)
  • Pipe cleaners (aka “chenille stems”) in assorted colors
  • Googly eyes
  • Yarn/embroidery floss in various colors

Additional items to include – many of which you probably already have at home, or can intercept before they go in the recycling bin (multi-partitioned bead boxes are great for storing the smaller items):

  • Clean cardboard, including TP and paper towel tubes, and egg cartons
  • Old glossy magazines and calendars, for cutting up
  • Drinking straws, assorted sizes and colors
  • Popsicle sticks (aka “craft sticks”)
  • Round coffee filters
  • Plastic lids of all sizes/colors
  • Cardboard and plastic canisters
  • Buttons, rhinestones, beads, feathers, ribbons, etc.
  • Small seashells and pebbles, clear round & flatbacked marbles
  • Dried beans or pasta
  • Corks, rubber bands, bread tags, toothpicks, broken costume jewelry, etc.

Restaurant supply stores, and places like Smart & Final, are great for many of these items. While you’re there, pick up an inexpensive plastic tablecloth, if you’re concerned about protecting your work surface. You don’t need to round up ALL of these items at once – just having the basics on-hand should be enough to get your kiddos started! Kids will usually have plenty of ideas once presented with interesting tools, but in case they need a little inspiration to get started, ask your kids to:

  • Make their favorite animal, or create a new one!
  • Craft a useful invention
  • Duplicate one of their favorite places, small scale
  • Express a feeling
  • Embellish a container, to keep special things in
  • Design a lavish birthday cake
  • Collage a self-portrait

The Museum of Craft and Design offers at least 2 children’s programs per month – one at the Museum and one off-site, catering to kids of different ages. We hope you’ll come visit us soon! In the meantime, we wanted to offer this suggestion for facilitating hands-on fun at home. Chances are, your kiddos will be having so much fun, you’ll want to join them! Happy crafting!

This guest blog has been provided by Natasha Glushkoff, Children’s Program Manager at The Museum of Craft and Design.