10 Hanukkah Crafts to Get Kids Into the Holiday Spirit
There's so much more to Hanukkah festivities than playing "Dreidel, Dreidel" with family and friends. Getting into the Hanukkah spirit is easy when you remind yourself you have more than a week of celebrations ahead of you—and keeping the whole family entertained after lighting the menorah each night is easy with the help of these crafts.
The Festival of Lights is all about spending time with family and exchanging meaningful gifts with loved ones that may be near or far. What better way to wrap gifts for family and friends than to create a handmade Hanukkah card, too? We're sharing two easy ways the kids can put their own stamp on each gift with different greeting card projects; one involves a craft closet staple that you most likely already have on hand, and the other comes together with just a few sheets of construction paper. Your little ones can create different greeting cards for grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and even teachers. To make things even more special, we're sharing a fun Hanukkah gift bag idea that will look just right alongside it.
Before you exchange gifts, however, little ones will watch in awe as the menorah's shamash candle is lit. Allowing them to participate in the nightly tradition may seem dangerous as there's fire involved, but parents can still teach kids about the importance of the menorah with a separate kid-friendly display on a mantle or shelf in the living room. From the menorah to potato latkes and even traditional gelt, we're sharing innovative projects that allow you to teach the whole family about important Hanukkah traditions in a safe way; these ideas will help create magical customs all your own.
A coating of fine glitter turns plain wooden dreidels into a display-worthy centerpiece. You could also string them together to create a shimmering garland. To make the centerpiece and the garland, we used plain wooden dreidels, in varying sizes, and different shades of glitter with a fine coating of adhesive. Even the smallest of children can handle dipping their dreidels in the glitter color they like best.
Hanukkah Menorah of Crayon Candles
While a traditional menorah incorporates tall votive candles, this kid-friendly version calls for two easy-to-find ingredients: crayons and a common pantry staple.
Hanukkah Star and Dreidel Cards
Skip the stationery aisle of your local pharmacy and create Hanukkah greetings with cut-out patterns—we're sharing two classic variations with our custom templates in the following guide.
Pipe Cleaner Hanukkah Cards
Use pipe cleaners to create a pair of dreidels, the Star of David, or a lit menorah. To make the menorah card, twist two dark blue pipe cleaners together; then, twist two light blue pipe cleaners together. You will have one thick pipe cleaner in dark blue and one in light blue; twist these together to get two-tone chunky candles. Cut the pipe cleaner into thirds or quarters, based on desired candle length. To make the candle flame, diagonally snip a yellow pom pom on the left and right hand side with a pair of scissors before gluing "flames" to candles. Now make the shamash candle, then assemble the candles on the card before hot gluing them into place. Complete the menorah by adding a pipe cleaner base.
To make the Star of David card, start with an equilateral triangle using a single pipe cleaner and repeat with a second pipe cleaner. Stack both triangles on one another to shape a Star of David. Glue together, then glue to card.
To create the dreidel card, shape pipe cleaners into a dreidel before gluing to a card. If desired, cut small pieces of pipe cleaners and add the appropriate Hebrew letters to the dreidels.
Hanukkah Gift Bags with Clip-Art Tags
Make sweet goodies for each and every night of the week and store them in these shockingly simple folded goodie bags. They can also be used for smaller trinkets and gifts.
Hanukkah Potato Chips
The little ones may have trouble making a whole set of potato latkes with you for a traditional Hanukkah feast, but they can have fun and make snacks for the whole week with your help thanks to this interactive recipe. Make potato chips in the forms of stars, dreidels, and other designs by using a mandoline to thinly slice peeled potatoes lengthwise. Then, soak your potato slices in cold water to prevent discoloration; pat dry with paper towels, and have the kids use cookie cutters to cut shapes. Heat vegetable oil in a pot until it's at 360 degrees. Working in small batches, deep-fry the chips until they are golden brown, about three to four minutes. Drain the chips on paper towels, sprinkle with salt, and serve hot!
Painted Wood Block Menorahs
Have the kids create a menorah of their own! Glue together nine square wooden beads, with their holes facing up. Top the center bead with a second bead for a shamash candle, which you can hold together with a rubber band until the glue dries. Cover top half of beads with masking tape, and paint the bottom halves. Remove tape.
Hanukkah Window Stars
These vellum Hanukkah decorations make shine by day. Our templates make two different versions; to begin, print the small triangle template and cut it out. Then, trace twice onto vellum to make two triangles, and cut them out. Place together to make a Star of David. Punch a hole at each corner of the central hexagon (on template) and one more halfway along the hexagon's top side. Starting at the top center, weave thread through holes all the way around design until back at the top. Knot the thread, and hang the star in the window. Repeat with the larger triangle template if desired.
3D Paper Dreidel
Dreidel, dreidel, dreidel—made out of card stock! (And there's no glue required, so it's already dry and ready.) Print out our dreidel templates and trace sections onto lavender card stock, and cut out. Cut slits onto your cards as indicated on the templates. Here, we've used it as a place card, but kids can also spin them after dinner and throughout the week.
Hanukkah Gelt Bag
Each year, children who celebrate Hanukkah receive a small bag filled with gelt, the Yiddish word for money. Cut a piece of velvet measuring 5 by 15 inches; fold it in half and sew a tight zigzag up both sides, and fold the top edge over twice before hemming it. Find a Hanukkah-appropriate rubber stamp to use on your bags; or use this template to have a custom rubber stamp made.
Turn the velvet pouch inside out and place the stamp inside. With a spritzer, spray the pouch where it will be embossed. Using an iron set on high, press the fabric for 30 seconds. Turn it right-side out and fill it with cash and coins.