Christmas is done, the decorations are away, but what about the mountain of chocolate and the pile of Christmas cards left over? Most years we take them to a Christmas Card collection of some sort to be recycled, but this year we wanted to have some fun with them first!
These 10 toddler activities for used Christmas cards are all play based, and don’t really require much more than a pile of Christmas cards and a little bit of sticky tape!
These are all just suggestions for alternative ways to use old Christmas cards, and I’d love to hear if you have any other suggestions in the comments at the end of the post! So let’s get straight to the activities!
1. Make Christmas Card Tunnels
Using similar sized Christmas cards we layered them over each other to create a tunnel for our toy cars to go through.
Depending on the size of cards, you could go really big, and really long with your tunnels!
Encourage your little one to build their own and see if they can push a car, or roll a ball all the way through.
You don’t need to use tape to hold it together unless your toddler gets frustrated with it coming apart in which case you could tape together or even to the floor (best to use masking tape to protect floors)
2. Create Your Very Own Christmas Card Zoo Pen
We used just one Christmas card that we cut into strips and created a den for our tigers!
A little bit of tape is needed (or blu tac) to hold it together, and you could use a paper clip to keep the den shut if you wanted to.
Alternatively, this could be made into:
– a sheep pen
– an animal cage
– a fence for chickens
Let your child take the lead, or use their interests to create the activity
3. Create a Christmas Card Campsite
Christmas cards make such great tents! We created this wintry camping set up using just one Christmas card and an extra little bit for snow!
You can create a snow topped tent by using the inside white part of a card and bending it backwards and cutting with a wavy line to look like snow – either place or tape on top.
We went for a winter theme campsite, but you could use whatever you have and recreate your favourite camping experience with lots of tents!
4. Get lost in a Christmas Card Maze
This maze was super simple, we didn’t make any elaborate plans other than to stand the cards up in a group and have fun helping our little penguins through the forest of Christmas cards!
You could if you wanted, tape the cards together and make it more of a proper ‘maze’ – but as this is for little ones I wanted to keep it simple.
(If you have a little HEX bug, it’s really fun to watch them crawl around the maze!)
5. Make some 3D Shapes with your Christmas Cards
This is great for little ones learning their shapes. You might want to make them yourselves if they are a bit younger and would struggle to put them together or you can do it with them and talk about the shapes as you do so.
We found it best to use the mini (and mostly square) Christmas cards for this as they made it easier to form the shapes.
6. Construct a House of Christmas Cards
Using a Duplo board, we slotted cards into the base board to make a room, or house for our little Duplo figuress to play in.
This worked really well as the board helped to prop up the cards and keep the shape – making it a great activity for little ones to have a go at independently.
You could leave a space for a door but this would make the building more likely to collase as there would be no overlapping!
7. Build a Christmas Card Tower
This is a lot harder than it looks and would depend on how patient your little one is, but its a fun activity to try!
Maybe try making squares as shown earlier and stacking them instead for an easier challenege!
8. Keep your toys cosy in a pop up Christmas card barn
My daughter absolutely loved this one using the square we made earlier and adding a card for the back (this makes it steady) and a card roof.
You could make a little row of houses and create a little town or make one large house or stable for larger soft toys.
9. Have a go at Christmas Card Bowling
Using a small ball and an arrangement of Christmas cards of varying sizes, you can have a lot of fun creating your own bowling alley in the lounge!
You will probably want to use a sponge ball with little ones, however it can make the game harder so you could use a toy car (the wind up type would be a lot of fun for this!) and have a go at running the car into the cards!
10. Get Creative with Christmas Card Cutouts!
And finally this is the more traditional crafting activity for old Christmas cards with a bit of a difference as this is for little ones!
I cut out and pulled off parts of the Christmas cards and put a blob of blue tac on the back of each piece. I then got out a wipe board (this would work on the fridge or a simple piece of paper I like to mix it up a bit and the wipe board makes it easy to stick) and we stuck the pictures all over to create a beautiful christmas collage!
Christmas Card Activities for January!
Occupying toddlers all year round is a full time job, and sometimes requires something a little different (toddlers love repetition but sometimes we as adults need a break form the norm!!)
There should be something for everyone in these activities – if you have any more ideas I’d love to hear them in the comments below 😀
Enjoy re-purposing this years Christmas cards and if you’re looking for more play inspiration then be sure to check out the BLOG for lots more simple and fun ideas!
Louisa | Mum’s Creative Cupboard x