Kids Crafts: Making Mini Books & Garden Journals - Red Ted Art's Blog : Red Ted Art's Blog

Kids Crafts: Making Mini Books & Garden Journals

| March 21, 2012 | 32 Comments

Easter activitiesWelcome to this week’s kids’s craft – Making Mini Books, which we turned into our Kids’ Garden Journal! First we dif some gardening and then we made some mini books out ONE sheet of paper (very cool and very exciting). This mini book will become the children’s “Garden Journal” (or simply use it as a colouring book or for creating stories). Either skip our gardening part and head straight for the mini book, OR, come and see how the kids got planting first! It is something that I love doing with the children every year and it is wonderful to see them learn and develop their understanding of their environment.

garden journal

The lovely people at innocent kids are currently giving away a range of seeds for kids to grow this Spring – definitely worth getting your hands on some! We received a set of own (as well as gorgeous watering can & gardening tools *thank you*) and the kids couldn’t wait to get stuck in.

Planting seedlings really is quite straight forward. We have set of newspaper seedling pots that we have made, but we decided to grow the kids’ special seeds in some old juice carton containers. Perfect bit of upcycling and shows that you can use anything – from newspapers, to egg cartons, to yoghurt pots to juice cartons to get going! So… our afternoon:

vegetable gardening

1) Inspect your seeds! (very important – after all you need to decide what to plant!)

planting containers

2) Make some holes in your upcycled container. I used some sharp scissors for this. The kids really wanted to do this – but, tut tut, this one is for adults only.

vegetable gardening

3) Fill with earth. (We had a lot of earth going in AND out.. but got there eventually).

vegetable gardening

4) Place in your seedlings & name tags.

vegetable gardening

5) Add a little more earth

vegetable gardening planting

6) Water.

garden activities for kids

7) Water some more (and get a little wet).


I am going to try and make the kids responsible for these and remind them to water them every few days. We are also going to keep a Garden Diary and we will record.

This is a great little paper craft activity. I love things that you can make out of one sheet of paper. It looks “confusing” at first, but seriously, these books are easy and so cute. Make them anywhere, anytime (you can skip using scissors, once you are good at creasing!):

Our books:

garden journal

Now we are recording what we planted, when they sprouted, what vegetable grew first, how it tasted etc.

kids garden journal

kids garden journal

I think it will be a great “science” experiment for Red Ted!

And here is a lovely book to go with planting:

Up, Down, and AroundUp, Down And Around, by Kathryn Ayres. The first thing that caught Red Ted’s (2.5yrs) attention is all the detail. He loves all the little bugs and bunnies and snails on every page and loves finding them. He chose this book himself (when presented with a choice). It is fun, bright and colourful. I don’t think it is the “best” how do plants grow book, but then I am not sure what a “best book” for this age group would look like. It does show the sowing of seeds and the needing to water and then it focuses on how things grow (up or down etc) – so it definitely has the basics and I think it is great for Red Ted to understand that you can’t always see a vegetable growing – but that sometimes they are underground (we enjoyed talking about potatoes in particularly!). It ends wonderfully with a wonderful vegetable picnic – salad, soup, pie. Yummy. We like at the Red Ted household!

And now finally:

easter activities

Join the Kids Get Crafty linky party! Each week Creative with Kids and Red Ted Art host this kids craft linky, bringing you more readers and more ideas to browse!

Disclaimer: by joining the Kids Get Crafty linky – you give us permission to highlight any projects on Red Ted Art and Creative with Kids or share your craft ideas on Pintrest – we will always link to your site!

If you have been crafty with your kid’s be it at home, in the kitchen or outdoors, please link up!

Now.. what I would like to know is – will you be planting with your kids this year? What will you grow? And will you have a go at making your very own Mini Book? Go on….

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Category: Gardening, Kids Craft, Nature, Paper Crafts, Spring, vlogs

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  1. Pinkoddy says:

    Great minds. I like the idea of the book I may do that if ours start to grow :)

  2. I love the garden journal – we\’re using a scrap book to journal our spring and gardening projects this year.

  3. These are cool. Think we will start some mini journals of our own for our sunflowers this afternoon :0)

  4. Hi there! What a cute idea. I din\’t get asked by innocent to have a go at this, but it looks like great fun indeed. The book is a great addition x

  5. Red Ted Art says:

    Thank you – am surprised by how much Red Ted is enjoying the mini book and how he wants to update it every time \”something happens\”! Perfect way to keep him interested in the garden!

    Cerys – I bet the scrap book is great – you can add empty seed packets and photos. Lovely!

    Thanks Pinkoddy – would love to see your photos of things growing!

  6. Red Ted Art says:

    (Just saw your ADORABLE carrot plating Pinkoddy, how cute!)

  7. Red Ted Art says:

    (And go Laura!! :-)

  8. I love their little illustrations! They are so sweet. Thanks for heads up on the book, too. I think my little ones would love that one, too.

  9. I love the little books Maggy, great idea. xx

  10. Pinkoddy says:

    Thank you. Don\’t hold out too much hope that they grow lol

  11. amummysview says:

    Great minds certainly think alike! looks like they had great fun! Glad to have found your link and look forward to joining in regularly and sharing! x

  12. This is such a useful way of making a small book! I am already seeing all the different ways of using it! You know we love to Garden with our Kids at The Educators\’ Spin On It and will be putting your idea to great use! Thanks for sharing. Love your little one helping in the background too!

  13. Wo! I love your activity! I have been thinking about science journals, and this is a great age appropriate soludtion. Thanks!

  14. What a great idea! I love your upcycled containers :)

  15. Red Ted Art says:

    @Krissy – I love the drawings most – especially when he is so proud of them (and we really did plant a melon.. don\’t think it will grow, but we can try!)
    @Kim – would love to see how you use your books, I am trying to get the neighbour\’s boy to write me some short cartoon stories….

  16. Red Ted Art says:

    @my oatmeal kisses – definitely, I think the size of the book makes it fun and \”Non threatening\”..

    @joyce, thank you :-) there are so many things you can plant upcycled in!!!

  17. Back again to say a big thank you for linking up to Kid\’s Co-op this week

  18. Bella says:

    I just love your idea of a garden journal for kids. There’s so much to learn from gardening. It’s a little trickier when kids get older. When mine see leaf bags coming out, they run in the opposite direction!

  19. Red Ted Art says:

    @Bella Oh no! What a shame… will be interesting to see how my kids grow up and what things they will enjoy doing and what not… I live in a pink bubble of naiveness hoping they will like it all for ever! *sigh*

  20. love this, I make a little journal usually myself too! thanks so much for sharing on Craft Schooling Sunday!

  21. I love these mini journals. This would make a great doodle book to carry in diaper bags too! Thanks for sharing with Tuesday Tots! :)

  22. Hi Maggie,

    Just to let you know I\’m featuring this post on Tuesday Tots on 3rd April.

    Cerys @ Rainy Day Mum

  23. kindergarten teacher says:

    You made this tired ole kindergarten teacher’s day! I teach English as a Second Language to kindergarten students in New York State in the USA…I was looking for a simple way to bring gardening to life for my students…doesn’t get any better, or more organic than this!

    I also love the one-page mini book! I can think of a thousand and one uses…my students will never get tired of it! Your children are so fortunate to have such a creative, inspirational mama as you. Keep dreaming

  24. cjs5308 says:

    Your mini book is exactly what I was looking for to use in my son’s kindergarten class party. Thanks! Question though…did you print out the title and pages or did you hand write them? I have to make 22 so I’m hoping I can print them out.

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