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Cute Crafts for Kindergarten That’ll Prepare Kids for School

These DIY cute kindergarten crafts will help kids prepare for school and have fun crafting!
Cute Crafts for Kindergarten That’ll Prepare Kids for School
Updated: August 29, 2023
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Starting kindergarten, while a positive experience, is sometimes intimidating to children. Especially if they've never attended daycare or pre-K. One of the best things parents can do to prepare their kids for the transition is to talk about it and engage in related activities.

These DIY art projects for kindergarten can help your child prepare to start kindergarten and feel excited about it. Getting crafty with your child creates bonding time and an opportunity to discuss the transition.

Related:  Is My Child Ready for Kindergarten? (Checklist)

If you have a little one whose reluctant to start school but loves art activities, try making a few of the craft projects below with your soon-to-be Kindergartner to help them feel more at ease.

Benefits of Crafts and Arts for Kindergarteners

Arts and crafts are a hands-on interactive learning experience for children. When kindergartners create art, they develop and refine many essential skills needed for school and life.

Improves Kids’ Physical and Brain Development 

Art projects involve fine motor skills, problem-solving, imagination, artistic interpretation, self-expression, spatial reasoning, color and shape recognition, cause and effect, independence, and self-esteem.

Boosts  Kids’  Creativity and Self-Expression 

Kids' crafts are best when they are open-ended and don’t have an expected result. However, there are times and events, for example, Mother’s Day, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, etc., that you may wish to create a gift or keepsake. 

When using craft templates, avoid showing children what the finished project “should” look like. Because if there’s doesn’t match, they may feel they are not good at art or have failed. 

Instead, say something like, “We’re going to create some spooky ghosts for Halloween; here are our supplies.” Then allow your child to do the project however they feel is best. 

Sparks Discussion for Kids and Parents  

Back to School is another time-specific craft that might benefit your little one. Themed kindergarten crafts allow you to discuss the topic relaxed and casually. For example, the first craft listed below is a school bus. 

You could start a conversation as you create the bus by saying, “We’re making a bus like you’re going to ride! What do you think about riding the bus?”

Each of the crafts included provides an opportunity for a starting school discussion and are easy, fun craft ideas you can make at home!

Related: 30 Conversation-Starter Questions to Ask Kids About School


Easy DIY Kindergarten Crafts To Do At Home

To create each of these easy crafts, you likely already have the craft supplies you need at home! These are simple and fun crafts that use recyclables and everyday arts and crafts supplies. 

Milk Carton School Bus

Milk Carton School Bus DIY craft
Image source: Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas

This adorable Milk Carton School Bus craft by Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas will make riding the school bus seem more inviting!


  • 1/2 gallon milk carton
  • Yellow paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Construction paper, white and black
  • Scissors
  • Crayons and markers
  • Glue stick
  • Foam stickers
  • 4 plastic bottle caps
  • Hot glue gun


  1. Paint the outside of the milk carton with a layer of yellow paint. Apply two coats, letting the paint dry in between coats.
  2. Cut two long rectangular strips from white construction paper using scissors, then fold the strips into thirds.
  3. Draw black lines down the folded lines using crayons or markers to make the strips look like windows.
  4. Glue the "windows" across the yellow milk carton with a glue stick. Let the glue dry completely.
  5. Cut two long rectangular strips from black construction paper using scissors, and glue them under the window strips, one per side of the bus.
  6. Apply foam letter stickers across the black strips to spell out the word "school" on each side of the bus.
  7. Draw people in the windows of the bus with crayons or markers.
  8. Cut out a circle from white construction paper, and attach it to the front of the bus. This is where you can draw the bus driver.
  9. Attach four plastic bottle caps onto each corner of the milk carton bus using a hot glue gun, then allow the hot glue to cool completely.

Paper Plate School Bus

For a simpler take on the school bus craft, try this paper plate bus from Honey & Lime. This craft incorporates shapes in a fun way!

Paper Plate School Bus DIY arts and crafts
Image source: Honey & Lime


  • 1 standard-sized white paper plate
  • Free Printable - School Bus Shapes craft
  • Yellow tempera paint
  • paintbrush
  • kid-safe scissors
  • glue stick


  1. Print the school bus template on white cardstock.
  2. Cut your paper plate in half evenly, directly down the middle. Paint the plate on one side until the white is completely covered. Set aside and allow to dry.
  3. Cut out shapes for the school bus wheels and windows
  4. Glue the shapes onto the bus. 

Allow your child to glue the windows and wheels anywhere they like! Avoid correcting them or telling them where to place the pieces.

Paper Plate Rainbow Fish

Paper Plate Rainbow Fish
Image source: A Little Pinch of Perfect

The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister is an excellent book to read to your child. It teaches them about friendship and self-awareness. You can create this adorable companion craft from A Little Pinch of Perct using a paper plate!


  • Craft paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Circle Sequins
  • Googly Eye
  • Glue
  • Craft paper
  • Scissors
  • Toilet paper roll



  1. Have your child paint the plate blue.
  2. To make the scales cut a toilet paper roll in half lengthwise. The kids can now use it to dip and stamp into paint. Cut the tube into fours to make 4 stampers from each toilet paper roll.
  3. Your child can dip each paper towel stamper into the paint choice of their color.
  4. Add sequins, and googly eyes, to decorate their fish.
  5. Draw fins on the craft paper and have the child cut them out, or let your child draw fins for a more personal touch.

Paper Plate Apple

Paper Plate Apple - DIY arts and crafts for kindergarteners
Image source: Glued to My Crafts

Do kids still give teachers apples? Well, either way, your little one can make this adorable apple to gift, from Glued to My Grafts, on the first day using a paper plate, tissue paper, and a cutout of their handprint. It’s a great way to talk about their new teacher and classroom!


  • Paper Plate
  • Red Tissue Paper
  • School Glue
  • Green Construction Paper (or white paper and green paint)
  • Pencil Scissors


  • Cut, or better yet, let your child tear the red tissue paper into small squares or pieces.
  • Apply school glue all over the large paper plate.
  • Have your child place the tissue paper on the glue until the paper plate is completely covered. 
  • For the stem/leaf of the apple – make your child’s handprint on cardstock or construction paper. 
  • Trim out the handprint and attach it to your paper plate to look like an apple.

Educational Kindergarten Crafts

Anytime your child engages in arts and crafts, it is educational. However, these crafts have a specific educational goal. For example, they are working on letter or number recognition or shape identification. 

Chalk Board Rice Krispy Treats

Chalkboard Rice Krispie Treats - back to school food arts and crafts for kindergarteners
Image source: From ABCs to ACTs

This adorable baking craft from From ABCs to ACTs is delicious and educational. Baking and cooking are ideal activities for teaching math and science concepts. Depending on your child’s school, they may not be allowed to take these in to share, but you can certainly enjoy making and eating them!


  • 9 x 9-inch pan of Rice Krispie treats (made with your favorite recipe) tablespoon solid shortening
  • 1 cup Wilton black candy melts
  • 2 large red Airhead candies
  • 2 large blue Airhead candies
  • 2 large green Airhead candies
  • White icing tube (can often be found in the cake decorating section of your local craft store)


  1. Cut the Rice Krispy Treats into 6 individual bars.
  2. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper, place the 6 Rice Krispie bars on the sheet, and set aside.
  3. In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave 1 tablespoon solid shortening for 45 seconds or until melted.  Add the black candy melts and stir until melted. (You may need to microwave in 10-second increments until the candy is completely melted and smooth.)
  4. Dip the tops of the Rice Krispie bars into the melted black chocolate and place them back on the cookie sheet for about 30 minutes to harden.  If you find it easier, you can also use a spatula to spread the melted chocolate onto the top of each bar.
  5. Make the border for each chalkboard by cutting each candy Airhead into 4 long strips.
  6. Lay the strips along the outer edges of each Rice Krispie treat and gently press them down.
  7. Finally, with the tube of white icing, pipe your favorite back-to-school phrases onto the chalkboards and enjoy!

Craft Stick Bookworm Bookmark

Craft Stick Bookworm Bookmark - fun arts and crafts DIY activity for kindergarteners
Image source: Arts & Crackers

This simple craft from Arts & Crackers is easy to execute and will boost your kid’s interest in reading (hopefully!) You can use standard popsicle sticks or purchase jumbo craft sticks. Either way, making a bunch of these at one time is a cinch. These adorable bookworms also make an excellent spring craft!


  • Wooden craft sticks 
  • Crayons or markers
  • Black marker
  • School glue
  • Googly eyes 


  1. Using the crayons, color the stick. You can color the front and back. This is an opportunity to teach your child about patterns and color schemes. Rub off any excess crayon from the wooden stick so you will not have any color transfer to your book pages.
  2. Allow your child to place googly eyes.
  3. (Optional) Use a black permanent marker to add a smiley face.

Simple Shape Pencil Craft

Simple Shape Pencil Craft Activity for Kindergarteners
Image source: A Dab of Glue Will Do

This adorable pencil craft from A Dab of Glue WILL Do reinforces your child’s knowledge of shapes and develops spatial awareness.


  • Yellow construction paper
  • Brown construction paper
  • Black construction paper
  • Pink construction paper
  • Aluminum foil
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Glue


  1. To prepare for the activity, draw and cut out a large rectangle, small rectangle, large triangle, and small triangle from card stock or other heavy paper for the students to use as templates.
  2. Have your child use the templates to trace the shapes onto the colored construction paper.
  3. Next, have your child cut the shapes out. 
  4. Lastly, ask your child to create a pencil using the pieces provided.

Consider placing a pencil on the table in front of them as a model. This activity is a puzzle of sorts and is excellent for pattern following and spatial awareness.

Bean Letters

Bean Letters Craft for Kindergarteners DIY
Image source: CM's World of Learning

If your little one doesn’t know all their ABCs by the time they start kindergarten, don’t fret. It is developmentally appropriate for kids to enter kindergarten with a few letters not nailed down; chances are they’ll know them long before first grade. But if your child needs ABC practice, try this fun craft from CM’S World of Learning.


  • Construction paper
  • Marker
  • White school glue
  • Dry beans


  1. Place a sheet of construction paper onto a flat surface, then draw a letter on the paper using a marker.
  2. Trace the pencil markings with white school glue.
  3. Place dry beans over the line of glue, one at a time, until the entire letter is covered with beans.
  4. Allow the glue to dry completely before hanging up the bean letter.

As your child creates, discuss letter names and words that begin with those letters!

Creative Kindergarten Art 

Pool Noodle Chalk Pencil

Pool Noodle Chalk Pencil Craft for Kindergarteners Back to School
Image source: LalyMom

How cute is this Pool Noodle Chalk Pencil from LalyMom? This craft is sure to make your kindergartner want to start school!


  • Pink pool noodle
  • Serrated knife
  • Yellow pool noodle
  • Silver duct tape
  • Jumbo sidewalk chalk


  1. Place the pink pool noodle on a flat surface, and cut off a 4-to-5-inch piece with a serrated knife.
  2. Place the yellow pool noodle on a flat surface, and cut off a 27-to-30-inch piece.
  3. Cut around one end of the yellow pool noodle at an angle to "sharpen" the tip.
  4. Place the pink pool noodle section on the flat end of the yellow pool noodle section, and wrap silver duct tape around the seam to attach them.
  5. Push a jumbo sidewalk chalk into the "sharpened" end of the yellow pool noodle, then have fun writing!

DIY Rainbow Backpack

DIY Rainbow Backpack craft for back-to-school
Image source: Momtastic

Kids love getting new school supplies. And if you have a crafty kid at home, they’ll love the idea of creating a one-of-a-kind backpack! This adorable watercolor rainbow craft is courtesy of Momtastic!



  1. Spray the backpack with a very light mist of water. Don’t soak it! You want it barely damp so the marker slightly bleeds as you color.
  2. Use the markers to add color to the entire surface of the backpack. Be sure to alternate the colors you’re using. Don’t worry about saturating the bag with ink. Scribbles are just fine and will still get the same effect.
  3. Once you’ve covered some of the backpack’s surface with the markers, spritz water over the ink. The more water you add, the more the colors will bleed together, creating a cool watercolor look.
  4. Use a paper towel to soak up any extra water that isn’t being absorbed.
  5. Seal the color with heat by tossing the backpack in the dryer for a few minutes until it is dry again. Alternatively, you can wait for the backpack to dry and run over the colorful surface with an iron. It removes wrinkles as a bonus!

Create with Cardboard Boxes

Create with Cardboard Boxes
Image source: Pexels

These crafty ideas from the blog KneeBouncers aim to engage your child’s creativity and social skills. Kindergarten is about learning new routines, adapting to change, and making friends. These skills require creativity and self-assurance. Cardboard crafts don’t have to only be for Earth Day. Dig into your recyclables and see what else your child can create!


  • Cardboard boxes and other recyclables
  • Paint or markers
  • Scissors
  • Tape 
  • Glue
  • Other arts & crafts supplies


There is no set thing to make when creating recyclable art. But you can use the process to engage your child in role-play, developing social skills needed for kindergarten. 

Additional Tips for Kindergarten Crafts

When are kids are learning, it is sometimes our instinct to jump in and “correct” or help them. Do your best to let your child create without your influence. 

Allowing your child to engage in a free and creative art process teaches them important problem-solving, spatial reasoning, and logic skills. Not to mention it enhances their creativity!

Avoid using worksheets or coloring books as they stifle creativity. However, there is nothing wrong with the occasional coloring page to pass the time, especially if your child enjoys them. 

Keep a wide range of craft supplies ready to go, things like googly eyes, pom-poms, sequins, craft sticks, pipe cleaners, playdough, glue, scissors, black paper, crayons, markers, stickers, tissue paper, buttons, foam shapes, etc. 

When working on kindergarten crafts with your child, make school sound fun and exciting, even if you feel nervous. Your child will take their cue from you, so the more excited you are, the more interested they’ll be! Starting school is a big adventure. Use these craft projects to engage your little one and get them ready and excited for school!

​Are you looking for even more cute crafts for kindergarten? Try these 10 Apple-Themed Crafts and Activities for Kids! 

L. Elizabeth Forry

About L. Elizabeth Forry

L. Elizabeth Forry is an Early Childhood Educator with 15 years of classroom… Read more

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