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40 Backyard and Camping Crafts for Kids

Loraine loves arts and crafts and used to volunteer at an elementary art class. She loves sharing fun and easy craft tutorials.


Kids love the outdoors, and when they see the crafts ideas that I have gathered here, they'll be busy for the whole summer. Here is an opportunity to grab a bag or basket, go for a walk in the woods or on the beach with the kids, and pick up supplies as you go to make crafts when you return. To make the really big bubble makers shown above, go to PBS Parents.


1. Wooden Arrows

Make inspirational wooden arrows for your backyard or your campsite. Then take them home and decorate a wall with them.


2. Hummingbird Feeders

Use left over pvc pipe to make very attractive hummingbird feeders for the backyard. A great family project to enjoy long after the fun of creating the feeder is over. Find the tutorial for making this hummingbird feeder at Birds & Blooms.


3. Leaf Heart With Message

This would be a fun backyard project for the family. Learn how to make the leaf hearts with the directions found at Mother Natured.


4. Buttoned Up Birdhouses

A great rainy day project for the kids using paint and buttons. The instructions for this project can be found at Mod Podge Rocks.


5. Painted Rock Trolls

Gluing on colorful feathers make these painted rock trolls especially cute. Easy to do!


6. Grow Crystals

This is such an old, but impressive project. We did this when I was a kid, but we used pieces of coal rather than briquets at that time. Your kids will love doing this. Go to Love and Laundry for a step-by-step pictured tutorial.

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7. Twig Frame

A nature frame for a picture of a memorable, summer activity. You'll find the instructions for making this frame at Home Work.

8. Make Squishy, Slimy Stuff


9. Fairy Garden

I love the looks of this fairy garden in a terra cotta pot. These are so easy to make that you could make a whole fairy village.


10. Garden Markers

The kids will be so proud when you use these garden markers year after year. Easy to understand directions are found at Craft Jr.


11. Indian Talking Stick

This is an opportunity to give the kids a little history lesson. You'll find the directions for making this talking stick at Hey Mishka.


12. Zentangle Rocks

Kids of all ages will want to make their own zentangle rock. Go to Adventures With Kids for the instructions.


13. Twig Birdhouse

What kid wouldn't love to make a birdhouse for his feathered friends in the backyard. You'll find the instructions on the website.


14. Roses on a Stick

I think this is a beautiful project. I'd be happy to display these in my home. Go to Dozi Design for the directions.


15. God's Eye

This is such an old, but great outdoor project. Many scout troops make these God's Eye crafts. Go to Craft Jr for the instructions.


16. Decorative Flower Pot

This is a good project to do outdoors because it can be a bit messy. It's really a pretty flower pot though. For the instructions, go to Lifestyle How Stuff Works.


17. Bean Bag Toss Game

Painted terra cotta saucers make this bean bag toss game a reusable one. I can see a family bean bag toss tournament in the future.


18. Tin Can Wind Chimes

These bright colored wind chimes are not only beautiful to look at, but they are also loads of fun to make. You'll find the directions for this tin can wind chimes project at She Knows Parenting.


19. Clay Pots Bird Bath

Make a birdbath for your backyard, and watch the antics of your bird friends. Go to DIY Joy for the directions.


20. Patio Light Covers

This would be so much fun to do as a family project. Make the patio light covers and then sit and admire them. Go to Family Unity Network for the instructions.


21. Terra Cotta Garden Turtle

Your backyard could use more than one of these cute turtles. Go to Favecrafts for the directions.


22. Faux Taxidermy

What a great recycling craft. The boys especially will enjoy doing this project. Find the instructions at Embellishments Kids.


23. Make a Nature Bracelet

Don't be surprised if you find that the boys will want to add bugs to their bracelet. This cute idea and the directions are found at Kid World Citizen.


24. Twig Trivet

You'll recall all the fun of summer when you use this twig trivet. You'll find the directions at Lifestyle How Stuff Works.


25. Flower Petal Sun Catcher

Make this sun catcher this summer and have a reminder of a happy summer all year round. You'll find the directions for making this sun catcher at For the Children.


26. Popcorn Tree

So, what are the kids going to do when the day is rainy, windy and chilly? How about making a huge bowl or popcorn, most of it to eat and some of it to use in this craft. The directions for making a popcorn tree can be found at Happy Hooligans.

27. Outdoor Fun for the Littlest Ones


28. Stepping Stones

This is a summer craft like the one my family did a number of years ago, and we still look at them and remember how much fun they were to make. Find the instructions for making stepping stones at C.R.A.F.T.


29. Make a Kite

You and your child can make a kite with the instructions that you'll find at Train up a Child.


30. Suranimals

When reading this article on ArtClubBlog I found out why the animals in these paintings are called suranimals. You'll be able to make this an educational project without the kids knowing that they are learning anything.


31. Bubble Snakes

When you go to Housing a Forest to find out how to make the bubble snake gun, you'll also find how you can make the bubble snakes rainbow colors.


32. Bee and LadyBug Birdhouses

I would love to hang these in my backyard near the patio. To make these birdhouses, find the instructions at the Lowe’s website.


33. Hover Craft

There has to be a certain amount of parental supervision with this project because there is super glue involved. Make this fun hover craft by going to Science Sparks for instructions.


34. Sponge Balls

Water fights have to be one of the most fun activities for kids each summer. And they don't seem to outgrow loving water fights, so you'll see Dads and Moms in the middle of these water fights. See how to make sponge balls to take water fights to the extreme. The instructions for making sponge balls are found at Sew Totally Smitte.


35. Outdoor Tic-Tac-Toe

Be sure that there is a tree stump already handy before you show this craft to the kids, or they may want to chop down the nearest tree. After you find the stump, go to Chicken Scratch for the tutorial on how to make the tic-tac-toe pieces. Of course, if all else fails when it comes to finding a tree stump, improvise by drawing the lines in the sand or on the ground.


36. Lady Bugs

Grab your paints and some old golf balls, this Art Drops craft is a perfect backyard activity.


37. Ice Cream in a Bag

With the directions at Whisk Us Away you can make ice cream in a bag.


38. Buggy Bug Catcher

Any child who loves bugs and catching bugs, will more than appreciate a box like this. Find out how to make this bug box by going to The Mama Dramalogues.


39. Cheese Puff Toss Game

Okay, so this isn't really an outdoor craft, but it looks like an activity my little grandkids would love, so I had to include this game here. Find the instructions for this cheese puff toss game at Parents.


40. Solar Table Centerpiece

This is an inexpensive, quick and easy way to put light on your patio or campsite table. Find the instructions at Starling Travel.

© 2012 Loraine Brummer

Could You Enjoy Making Crafts While Sitting in the Backyard? - or leave a comment

Michelle Hovorka Oxner from Houston on July 26, 2020:

Cool ideas! Thank you for sharing!

Jean Harris on January 14, 2018:

Thank you for this great list of suggestions Loraine! #28 is now on my to-do list for summer. I think I'll get the kids to leave hand or footprints on them so that I can smile when I see them in the yard years later.

shewins on July 31, 2013:

This is a fantastic list of projects.

Carol Brooks from Florida on June 28, 2013:

Absolutely! I paint flower pots and make garden signs while sitting under a tree.

Carol Brooks from Florida on June 28, 2013:

I love outdoor crafts and you have some really good ones here. I used to love making God's Eyes. Painted rocks are cool too!

Carol Brooks from Florida on June 28, 2013:

I love outdoor crafts and you have some really good ones here. I used to love making God's Eyes. Painted rocks are cool too!

msseiboi on July 24, 2012:

Beautiful tips..great lens

anonymous on July 08, 2012:

So many ideas I love the terracotta turtle the most though.

leonasharon on July 04, 2012:

AWESOME.i loved every idea.Great showcase of knowledge.Going to implement the Indian talking stick in my home.

anilsaini on July 03, 2012:

nice lens

Kumar P S on July 03, 2012:

Great ideas ! Very useful info.

Heidi Vincent from GRENADA on July 01, 2012:

Lovely ideas! The huge bubble blower was cute.

chadwik05 on July 01, 2012:

I like the grass house! Cool lens!

Angie G from Southern California on July 01, 2012:

Great lens. All these craft ideas look easy and fun. I have 4 kids, ages 7, 11, 15 and 17 and I'm going to get them all involved in making a few of your suggested ideas. Blessed on 7/1/12.

anonymous on July 01, 2012:

I absolutely love your ideas, its like going to camp for all those great projects they always have ...every kid in the neighborhood will be over for these wonderful backyard activities...delightful+++!

ceejaycmarshall on July 01, 2012:

really cool ideas, thanks! i love the grass house :)

dahlia369 on June 30, 2012:

Delightful collection of simple crafts, thank you so much for sharing them!! :)

Itaya Lightbourne from Topeka, KS on June 29, 2012:

Lots of great ideas for kids crafts in this awesome article! Wonderful job. :)

Jen withFlash on June 29, 2012:

These all look like a lot of fun!! I think we'll try some of them!!

anonymous on June 28, 2012:

@anonymous: Thanks for the information and success. Forum Kabbanet Site Designnet

peggygallyot on June 28, 2012:

Those are good ideas for the kids.

jessicahoward on June 28, 2012:

good job friend....they all are awesome and very interesting......i am sure my little nephew will enjoy making all this .......a wooden frame,twig trivet,twig wooden birdhouse.....thanks for sharing such an interesting work

anonymous on June 28, 2012:

Great ideas! I can't wait to try them out.

Deserthorse on June 27, 2012:

Love all the twig art but especially the birdhouse. Twig on!

cleanyoucar on June 27, 2012:

Great list you got here... squid liked!

lovemicheala on June 26, 2012:

Absolutely! The yarn balls are beautiful

lovemicheala on June 26, 2012:

Absolutely! The yarn balls are beautiful

anonymous on June 26, 2012:

Yes, it's very relaxing.

anonymous on June 26, 2012:

Thanks for the information and success. Kids can easily do these and enjoy them, too

floppypoppygift1 on June 25, 2012:

Great ideas-easy & fun! Love it! Cheers~cb

CoeGurl on June 25, 2012:

LOVE the grass house!

Caromite on June 25, 2012:

Very nice ideas, I really enjoyed reading your lens :)

PeterSpains on June 24, 2012:


Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on June 24, 2012:

Very creative. Kids can easily do these and enjoy them, too.