• Sticks: Have children help you gather small sticks outside, or use craft sticks, unsharpened pencils or chop sticks.• Twine, yarn or leather shoelaces: Help children create crosses by tying the sticks together where they intersect.
• Beads: A large variety of beads can be purchased in craft and fabric stores or made from self-hardening clay. The larger the hole in the bead, the easier it will be for children to work with them.• Beads for the youngest children: Tubular dry pasta (rigatoni, penne) makes good “beads” for very young children to string.• String: Depending on the type of bead used, provide children with string, yarn, embroidery floss, dental floss or thread. For young children using pasta or large-holed beads, wrap a small piece of tape around the ends of yarn (like the ends of shoelaces). With this, the children will not need to use needles.• Needles: The size needles needed depends on the size of the holes in the beads. If a large needle can be used, consider plastic needles used for finishing knitting projects.
Children aged 7 and up can also sew beads onto felt squares or rectangles.
• Provide them with needles, thread, scissors and felt pieces.• Encourage them to plan a pattern with colors, types of beads, etc.• Depending on the size and shape of the felt, children can create small items such as a small purse, a case for glasses or cell phone, bookmarks, a sleeping bag for a small doll or a doll blanket, and sachets (obtain pine needles or lavender for filling). While these may require simple sewing, a child who is able to sew on beads will be able hand-sew seams.• For a group project, have children decorate with beads an even number of felt squares (at least four); then sew the squares together to form a wall quilt.