This is a fun craft activity that preschoolers will love to make over Christmas and that has been inspired by the world famous Minnie Mouse character from the Disney Junior channel, which can be viewed over on Foxtel. It’s a threading activity that will help develop fine motor skills and improve children’s understanding of patterns.
It might sound a little crazy, but this year I suggested to my husband that we don’t decorate our Christmas tree with any of our store bought ornaments and random pieces this year. Looking at bundles of plastic baubles and candy canes didn’t spark joy for me this year. I was, like I am every year, drawn to all the odd pieces that over time had been handmade or have some significance to our family.
I decided that we would try and aim to have more personalised piece included in our Christmas and reflect the interests that we have as a family and as individuals. So when I suggested to Possum (aged 4 years) that we should make a garland to replace our crushed tinsel, she was keen to make it her favourite colour, pink and include bows, much like Minnie Mouse from Disney Junior The Channel’s, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
Recommended age: 3 years+
(Active supervision is always required on my activities)
To make a decorative Minnie Mouse inspired Christmas garland you will need –
- Straws (cut into 2cm pieces)
- Wool (or similar)
- Pipe cleaner
This is such a simple and fun craft to make with the kids that you can make and share these with your friends and family on your social media. Be sure to tag @DisneyJuniorAUNZ and #DJMagicalMoments so I can see it too!
So to make this garland you want to first cut the paper into rough bow shapes. Don’t feel the need to make your bow shapes perfect, they will take shape once threaded and even the simple bow shapes will give your garland texture.
Be sure to draw dots or add sparkly gems, which is so very Minnie Mouse.
Next you want to help your child create a needle, which you will use for threading. Simply cut your pipe cleaner into half. Fold it in half and hook one end of the wool, as shown above. Twist the end of your pipe cleaner to make the point of your needle and you’re done! Preschoolers find this type of threading needle easier than any alternative.
Now the threading can begin! Children simply thread the straw pieces onto the wool using the pipe cleaner needle. You might want to talk to your child prior about the possibilities of them creating a pattern with the straw pieces and the paper bows. Of course your child might not be interested in a patterned garland, which is fine.
These types of activities are fabulous for developing a child’s fine motor skills. It gives their little fingers a great work out. Threading activities are also great for improving a child’s level of concentration as there is a real process involved in them creating a garland like this.
See, I told you Possum loves Minnie Mouse and when I think about it, there are many things about Disney Juniors animated and live action programming that I really like. In seamless style Disney always seems to be able to blend their storytelling with important learning components that help children with their early language and maths skills, as well as teaching them about social and emotional development.
We made our Minnie Mouse threaded garland in lengths of about 80cm and tied them all together to make a really long garland to hang around the tree. Possum of course couldn’t help herself and make a necklace. I love that with a little inspiration from the Disney Junior Channel we have created a little something magical for Christmas and something that we will treasure and enjoy as a family.
Do you enjoy making things with your children over Christmas?