A Wealth of Kid Hobby Ideas

Every young person needs a hobby.  An interesting kid hobby will help children learn as well as keep them entertained for hours.  It might even help them stay away from a bad peer group and stay out of trouble.  Some kids might think of video games or TV as an appropriate kid hobby, but most parents would like to see their kids doing something more challenging or educational. 

A good kid hobby is playing a musical instrument.  The guitar can often be self-taught from a book if a child has the interest, but for piano playing or other instruments, you will probably have to invest in lessons.  Practice is, of course, an essential part of mastering any musical instrument.

Another type of kid hobby is pursuing an art or a craft.  Kids can learn to draw, paint, or make scrapbook pages.  They can learn needle arts, such as embroidery, sewing, knitting or crocheting.  Beginning carpentry is a very useful kid hobby that may turn into a career, or at least skills that will be used for a lifetime.
  Tinkering around on gas engines or electronics is another kid hobby that can lead to useful skills.

There are all sorts of things that kids might like to collect for a hobby.  Some of the more common collections are of stamps, coins, and rocks.  Stamps are interesting because they can be from many different countries, becoming a geography lesson.  Coins and stamps both are of historical significance, and encourage reading to learn more about different eras in history.  Rock collecting as a kid hobby requires looking into science books.

Other collectibles include bean bag toys or figurines of a certain thing, such as owls, frogs, or unicorns.  Anything a child has an interest in can be collected.  If a kid is interested in dolphins, for instance, she may not only collect dolphin figurines and posters, but also be motivated to read books about dolphins.

Construction sets also make a good pastime for kids.  Many people may think of these only as toys, but children who have grown up with these sets and added components to them down through the years can create some pretty impressive models.  They are also gaining skills in reasoning and perception as they build.

Making model, such as cars, boats, and airplanes, has always been a popular kid hobby.  If your child is interested in making models, be very encouraging in the beginning.  Model car kits can be very complicated and require a great deal of precision.  If your child's first few creations leave a little bit to be desired, don't laugh or scold, or he is likely to never want to try to make anything again!  Get the easiest kit he is willing to make and then patiently help him as much as needed.

Many kids enjoy sports, making any athletic activity a great kid hobby.  Soccer, basketball, and little league baseball all come to mind, but don't forget about track and field events.  Maybe your child would enjoy distance running or gymnastics.  An active kid hobby will help your child stay in shape as well as make an interesting pastime.

Paper Crafts:  Scrapbook and Greeting Card Basics

Paper crafts are a popular pastime right now.  Scrapbooking is a fun way to display pictures and chronicle family history.  Other paper crafts include making greeting cards and even making hand made papers.

When getting started at paper crafts, it is easy to spend a lot of money!  Go easy at first until you know what sort of paper craft products you are likely to use.  For instance, you may find that you love using stickers in scrapbooks, but rarely use your rubber stamps.  If this is the case, you would be better off spending more on stickers and less on rubber stamps for your paper crafts.

Almost everyone has at least some of their photographs stored somewhere in a shoe box.  Scrapbooks are a great way to get those photos out where people can enjoy them.  You will need a loose leaf binder, some plastic page protectors, and some colored cardstock for starters.  Many paper crafts experts insist on only archival quality materials.  Check the labels as you buy.  Most paper products, even the cheaper ones, are labeled "acid-free," which means that it shouldn't fade or otherwise deteriorate if stored for a long time.  Sunlight will bleach almost anything, but your paper crafts should not be out in the sunlight very often.

To start a scrapbook you have several options.  You can select photos that all relate to one event, such as a trip or a child's participation in sports.  This type of scrapbook will be short, but can be designed around a theme.  This is a good choice if your photos are not in a jumble.  If they are, then you may wish to choose 3 or 4 photos around a general theme, and change the theme for each page.  You may want to include some 2 page spreads in your scrapbook.

Attach your photos to the cardstock with double-sided tape squares or a gluestick.  Then it's time to decorate the page with stickers, paper shapes, or rubber stamped designs.  In addition, you can use a colored gel pen to write dates, names, and other highlights about the activities in the pictures.

Other items are available in paper crafts stores.  These includes die cuts, which are pieces of paper already cut into shapes and objects.  There are also special scissors that cut paper with an interesting edge.  A pair of the type called "deckle" scissors is very useful for making elegant looking scrapbook pages, greeting cards, and other paper crafts.  If you also have an old pair of pinking shears that are too dull to cut fabric, you can use those for cutting out shapes and photos.

Many paper crafts enthusiasts begin with scrapbooking, but then branch out to making their own greeting cards.  Greeting cards may or may not have an original poem written on the inside.  A simple "Happy Birthday," "Get Well Soon," or even just "Hi!" is enough to brighten someone's day, so don't worry about not being a good enough writer to make your own greeting cards.  Rubber stamps often make beautiful greeting cards.  You can even attach small ribbons, beads, and other items to hand made cards.  A handmade card is sure to please anyone, whether they are interested in paper crafts or not.
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