Green Kid Crafts is a subscription box that sends 5-8 themed projects made with eco-friendly materials to your home every month. The boxes contain hands-on explorations in science, math, technology, engineering and art that are intended to challenge children from 3-10 years of age.
July’s theme was botany. This got my son very excited. He loves being outdoors more than anything, and we enjoy looking at plants together!
Each set of crafts is grouped together by theme. The introductory card depicts some of the exercises: making a plant press and an herbarium, using a botanist kit and creating botanical prints. Once your child has completed all of the activities in the box, the folks behind Green Kid Crafts have enclosed a badge to stick on a banner to signify the box’s completion.
Before we began, we checked out this nice visual representation of the different activities awaiting us in the box. Then we got to work.
We began by talking about plants and why they’re important. Although my son knew that plants make oxygen, he was unfamiliar with the process of photosynthesis. He thought this introduction was fascinating! He asked a lot of questions about glucose and energy more generally. When I told him that I didn’t learn about photosynthesis and chlorophyll until I was in high school, he got very excited! I asked him if he was fifteen years old, and he laughed hysterically.
The first project asked my son to make a plant press.
Before making it, though, my son wanted to decorate it. On the left, he painted a tornado and then superimposed a river on it. On the right, my son said he just mixed some colors together. Thanks in part to Green Kids Crafts, my son loves to combine colors to see what they create.
After letting his press dry overnight, he collected some flowers and plants from our backyard and laid them out on the enclosed paper. Next, he created a sandwich–cardboard, paper, plants, paper, cardboard–and secured it with two taut rubber bands.
After 10-14 days have passed, he should have perfectly dried plants! As he constantly reminds me, though, “Waiting is not easy!”
Once his plants have dried, we’ll tackle this herbarium together. Given its emphasis on writing, I’m going to have to help a lot with this activity. I hope that even after we finish cataloguing our first set of dried plants, my son will want to continue using his plant press and will want to add to his herbarium. This is a great way to learn about plants!
Next, Green Kid Crafts suggested a number of activities related to printmaking. Cool!
The first three activities utilize either plants or depictions of plants in making prints.
First, children place a plastic rubbing plate under a piece of paper and rub a crayon over the paper.
Next, they replace the rubbing plate with a real specimen. My son chose a leaf that he found on the ground.
Finally, children paint a specimen and transfer the paint onto a sheet of paper.
My son thought this was really fun!
After setting aside his notebook so that it could dry, he started to create his own homemade rubbing plates.
He made a number of these plates, each with a different design.
After placing glue on the pieces of cardboard in varying designs, he left his creations out to dry overnight.
The following day, he was delighted to see how they looked.
He had fun adding rubbings of them to his notebook.
We decided to hold off on making a plant pounded shirt this month. My son did some plant pounding in the May 2016 Green Kid Crafts box, so it’s still pretty fresh on his mind. Also, we don’t have a lot of large flowers in our back yard right now. We have a lot of lantana and crape myrtle flowers, but I don’t think either one is particularly well suited to this activity. We do have some morning glories, but they’re so few and far between that I really want to save them. All of our other flowers (indigo spires, blackfoot daisies, hyssop, etc) are relatively new plantings that I don’t want to pick just yet.
Here’s a picture of my son doing the activity on a piece of paper back in May. He really enjoyed it!
The enclosed botanist kit encourages kids to investigate specimens that they collect outside.
My son enjoyed looking at the veins on the leaves. He also opened up the Texas Mountain Laurel seed case to inspect the seeds. I’m glad we did this together, because he asked if he could eat the seed. NO!!!! This prompted a mini-lesson in the importance of knowing what plants are edible before ingesting them! I don’t think my son had ever realized that some plants are poisonous to humans before.
My son and I both enjoyed reviewing the parts of plants and flowers together. We talked about cross-sections, which my son was unfamiliar with. Although he could still use a little refresher on the parts of a flower, we both enjoyed this activity very much.
Finally, my son wore his Botany Expert sticker proudly!
What a fun box of crafts and scientific discovery! My son looks forward to examining his first batch of dried plants in a couple of weeks, and I look forward to helping him catalogue them in his new herbarium. It’s nice to have a long-term project that we can continue to work on together! It’ll help tide us over until our next Green Kid Crafts box arrives, which we always await with great anticipation. I wonder what we’ll learn about then!
The Description: In the Discovery Box you’ll find three eco-themed crafts connected by a monthly theme using art, science, movement, and play. All materials are non-toxic and sustainable where possible.
The Price: $20.00 per month
The Categories: Kids Craft & Activities Subscription Boxes. Green & Eco-Friendly Subscription Boxes, Kids Subscription Boxes with Sibling Add-Ons.
The Reviews: See all our Green Kid Crafts Reviews.
The Spoilers: Check out Green Kid Crafts Spoilers.