Children like making things, so craft activities are a great way for you and your child to have fun practising English. To give your child an extra reason for the craft activity, there are games you can play with the things you make. Keep everything in a box so you can play the games again.
You will use a lot of the same language for each of these activities, for example:
What colour is this?
Where is the red pen? Where are the scissors?
Draw / Write here.
How do you spell...?
Colour it in.
Let your child hear you use this language and sometimes let them be teacher, so they have to tell you what to do.
Cut out pictures of food from magazines. Use the pictures to make a food face. When you are making the faces, ask your child, e.g. What's this? Is this a nose? Your child can talk or write about the finished face, e.g. The mouth is a banana. The left eye is a grape.
Make simple hand puppets. Print these craft activity templates (PDF, 403KB) onto card and give instructions to your child in English – use the phrases above.
If your child makes two different colour bird puppets, they can use them when they say the Little birds rhyme from the Action games section
This is a sheet of helpful language (PDF, 200KB) from the video. Use it to help you do the activities with your child.
Make dice. Print these craft activities (PDF, 168KB) onto card. Help your child to cut out and write on the dice template, then stick it together.
On your dice, you can write:
- colours and have a game where you race to touch something of the colour shown on the dice;
- any pictures (animals, food, etc.) and name what is shown on the dice as quickly as possible;
- words from the Chant in the Action games section and perform the instructions (Jump; Clap; Arms up; Sit down, etc.).
Also included in Video 6
Make a clock to practise telling the time. Use:
- a circle of card or a paper plate;
- card for the clock hands;
- a split pin to hold the clock hands in place.
Help your child to mark out where the numbers go. You can ask your child to write the number word under each number to give them practice with these spellings. Use the split pin to hold the hands in place. You can see a finished clock on the video.
When the clock is finished, say some times for your child to put on the clock (check which times they have learned in their English course book), e.g. Five o'clock; half past six; quarter past nine; quarter to twelve. When your child can easily set the clock, set some times yourself and ask your child: What's the time?
You can make greetings cards. For special occasions, you can make cards in English. Talk to your child about what they are drawing: What's this? What colour is this?
Here are some phrases to put in the cards:
Happy Birthday! Ten today!
Merry Christmas! Happy New Year!
Happy Mother's Day! (in the UK, 4th Sunday in Lent; in the US, 2nd Sunday in May)
Happy Father's Day! (in the UK, 3rd Sunday in June)
Happy Anniversary! (for wedding anniversaries)
Get well soon!
Make a board game. You or your child can draw out a grid on some paper. Make the squares big so you can write in them. Mark the 'Start' and the 'Finish'. Write instructions in some of the squares, e.g.
Miss a turn.
Go back one place.
Go forward two places.
You can also have some cards with pictures of familiar words, e.g. animals, food or colours. You can print these pictures (PDF, 3MB). Put the cards face down next to the board. If a player lands on a square that says Take a card they say in English what is on the card or miss a go.
To play, you need a dice (maybe one you made) and counters. This language is useful: Your turn. My turn. You've won. I've won.