By Robin Lundgren
A homemade tooth fairy pillow is the perfect place for kids to tuck in their lost teeth for the night.
This is a great project for young children, who will enjoy making something that is fun and functional. After creating and using this treasure, you can be sure it will be a special keepsake long after all of the baby teeth are gone.
What You Need:
• Tracing paper
• Two pieces of felt in your child’s choice of color
• One additional piece of felt for a pocket
• Hole punch
• Masking tape
• Polyfill, cotton balls, crumpled tissue paper or paper towels for filling
• Tacky or fabric glue
• Fabric markers in a variety of colors
• Decorations such as bows or buttons (if desired)
What To Do:
1. Help your child draw a tooth shape on the tracing paper, or print out a tooth template from your computer. It should measure at least 6 inches by 6 inches. Have your child cut out the tooth shaped template.
2. Place the tooth shape on the felt. Help your child trace the tooth shape onto the felt twice.
3. Assist your child in using scissors to cut the tooth shapes from the felt. If your child is very young, you may need to cut the shapes out for him.
4. Have your child draw a square directly onto the piece of felt that she wants to use for the pocket. Help her to decide how big to make the square. It needs to be small enough to fit on the tooth shape, but large enough to hold the tooth and any money that the tooth fairy leaves behind.
5. Using tacky or fabric glue, ask your child to glue the square to one side of the pillow. Make sure the glue is only along three edges of the square so that there will be an opening for the tooth. Let the glue dry completely before starting the next step.
6. Using a single whole punch, punch holes along the outer edge of the tooth shapes for your child, spacing them about one inch apart.
7. Help your child measure around the tooth shape with yarn to figure out how much will be needed to lace the pillow together. Add a few extra inches to have room to tie the ends together. Let him cut the length of yarn with the scissors.
8. Wrap a piece of masking tape around one end of the yarn and knot the other end. Have your child lace her tooth fairy pillow together, leaving an opening to put in the stuffing.
9. Let your child stuff his pillow with polyfill, cotton balls or tissue.
10. Instruct your child to lace the pillow the rest of the way, so that it is completely closed. Help her tie off the end of the yarn and trim any remaining loose ends.
11. Allow your child to write his name on the pillow with the fabric markers. Encourage him to decorate the pillow, if desired, with bows tied through the holes, buttons tied on for fun or with his own marker decorations. (Just be sure that whatever he uses, it is something that can be put on his bed or under his pillow).
12. Encourage your child to use her pillow when she loses a tooth. This is sure to add to the excitement of a visit from the tooth fairy!
This Helps Develop:
Cognition is the mental process of knowing by developing awareness, perception and reasoning.
Reading multi-step directions and then practicing memory recall are terrific ways to enhance this skill. This activity also utilizes shape recognition, estimating and measuring skills.
Fine motor skills are the use of small muscle movements in the hands that occur in coordination with the eyes.
Tracing, gluing, sewing and drawing are all excellent opportunities to engage these skills.
Language is the expressive ability to communicate ideas and needs, and the receptive ability to understand what is said or written.
Parents can help their children by facilitating a running dialogue as they perform the steps needed to complete this project. Talk about the order of steps in the project, colors and decorations, how it feels when the tooth fairy visits and your own memories of the tooth fairy.
Social emotional development involves a child’s feelings of self worth, confidence and pride as well as their ability to get along with others in a group setting.
This is a wonderful craft that both children and parents will enjoy. Losing teeth is a rite of passage that is a memorable experience. What could be better than having a personalized, handmade pillow to commemorate the event?
Robin Lundgren is a writer and Vice President of Aquarian Entertainment.
Looking to experience Hands-On Science activities right here in our own area? Visit www.TheChildrensScienceCenter.org, where you and your children can “Explore, Create, Inspire.” The Children’s Science Center (CSC) is committed to building a place where children can grow in their love of learning.