Kids are always looking for new ways to have fun, and cardboard crafts are a perfect way to use up some of that excess energy! These quick and easy projects will keep your kids busy all day long. From adorable cardboard animals to a cool macaroni box camera, these projects are guaranteed to provide hours of entertainment.
Now go ahead and grab those old boxes out of the recycling bin—your kids will thank you!
Cardboard Crafts for Kids
Not only do these crafts encourage creativity, but they get kids thinking about how to recycle materials to make something new and beautiful.
What are you waiting for? Get started on one of these cardboard crafts for kids today!
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Fun Cardboard Crafts for Kids
Yarn-Wrapped Chick and Carrot from Natural Beach Living: These Easter crafts are too adorable! You’ll make the base for the chick and carrot out of cardboard—any old cardboard will do. Then, you’ll wrap the sturdy pieces in colorful yarn and turn them into a happy yellow chick and a bright orange carrot. They’re perfect for spring!
Ocean Drum Craft from Natural Beach Living: The sound of the ocean is incredible and so relaxing. Don’t you wish you could recreate it sometimes? Now you can with our super-simple ocean drum craft.
This is a wonderful project to try if you’re studying an ocean or marine life unit or if you want to make a DIY sort of “musical” instrument with the kids.
Everyone loves the bright colors and shiny materials used to make this gorgeous Unicorn card box.
Aquarium Night Light Box from teach-me-mommy.com: Speaking of marine life, kids will love making their own aquarium night light box out of an old cardboard box. The sea anemones made with recycled toilet paper rolls serve as the covers for the battery-operated tealights, which is just brilliant. All the other fish are creatively done, too.
Cardboard Maze from littleadoo.com: Introducing kids to mazes from an early age is great for helping them develop critical thinking skills. This cardboard maze is excellent for toddlers and preschoolers, takes only 15 minutes to make, and can be made with basic supplies from around the house.
Easy Cardboard Crafts
Chalk Cardboard Computer from handmadecharlotte.com: Give kids the thrill of having a laptop without dealing with screentime. This cute craft is sure to be loved by kids who love pretending to work like mommy or daddy and will enjoy drawing on the keys and screen.
Cardboard Space Shuttle from mamasmiles.com: Do your kids have dreams of rocketing up into the stars and studying space? This cardboard space shuttle is perfect for aspiring astronauts and will result in hours of pretend play with no money spent at all. The simplest toys are often the best and most loved.
Cardboard Bunny from hellowonderful.co: Hippity, hoppity, this bunny is perfect for Easter and is made entirely of recycled materials like cardboard and egg cartons. It’ll make a cute addition to your table or mantle for the Easter season.
Cardboard Slide from everydaybest.com: Are your kids cooped up indoors and bored? You’ll be the coolest parent around if you make a cardboard slide for the stairs. Use caution, of course—a helmet is probably a good idea—but let the kids sail down the stairs and work off some of that energy.
Cardboard Activities at Home
Cardboard Dragon Shield from intheplayroom.co.uk: Any knight in shining armor needs a shield for protection! Make your little night a hero-worthy cardboard shield featuring a beastly dragon and stick-on jewels on the front.
Knight’s Shield and Sword from redtedart.com: Here’s another shield version, complete with a cardboard sword to match. Now the kids are ready for battle!
Lacing Hearts from ourkidthings.com: You don’t have to wait for Valentine’s Day to come around to have fun with these lacing hearts. They’re great any time of year! All you need is cardboard, a hole punch, and some yarn to get started. This is a creative way to work on kids’ fine motor skills and is a terrific introduction to sewing.
Cardboard Zombies from artycraftykids.com: Halloween just got a lot more spooky (and more fun) with these colorful and creative zombies. Simply cut out head shapes from cardboard and provide paint, buttons, and other accessories for kids to decorate them.
Hot Air Balloon Costume Out of a Box from everydaybest.com: If you’re on the lookout for a creative Halloween costume, look no further than this fantastic hot air balloon idea. Decorate a large box, add some netting and a large helium-filled balloon, and you’re ready for lift-off.
Watermelon Dexterity Puzzle from littleadoo.com: Kids can use this watermelon puzzle to improve hand-eye coordination and to have fun during the summer months. It’s a terrific boredom buster that doesn’t involve screen time! It also helps kids work on concentration, focus, and patience. Even grownups are challenged by dexterity puzzles sometimes!
Cardboard Harp from littleadoo.com: Learn about string instruments with a beautiful cardboard harp you can make at home. It makes music like toy instruments from the store! Follow the step-by-step instructions or the video to make a harp for your children to play with.
Cardboard Guitar from redtedart.com: How about a guitar if your kids aren’t into a harp? Both can teach kids valuable lessons about how string instruments work. Plus, it’s just plain fun to rock out.
Cardboard Crafts Ideas
Play Pancakes from barleyandbirch.com: Serve up a big stack of pretend pancakes for breakfast! Kids will love adding these to their play kitchens, along with the cardboard frying pan underneath and cardboard tableware.
Cardboard Box Barn from seevanessacraft.com: Corral your little barnyard animals in a fun barn made from a cardboard box! This is an adorable project that’s sure to win points with the kiddos.
Cardboard Pirate Ship from redtedart.com: Sail the seven seas with a homemade pirate ship made out of cardboard. Just follow along with the template, paint, and add unique designs, and you’re set to sail.
Easy and Fun Craft Ideas
Cardboard Shapes from myboredtoddler.com: You can make so many exciting things from basic shapes. These simple cardboard shapes are great for shape recognition and getting kids to think creatively about how to arrange shapes to create different things.
Macaroni Box Cameras from handmadecharlotte.com: Do you have a future photog on your hands? This craft is perfect for kids who love pretending to take pictures. They’d also make excellent photo props for a party.
Cardboard Animals from redtedart.com: Make your own zoo with recycled boxes! It’s easier than you think to make an array of standing animals to create a play zoo or jungle in your home.
Cardboard Preschool Crafts
Butterfly Color Matching Activity from easypeasyandfun.com: This fun color matching activity is excellent for toddlers and preschoolers. They’ll get hours of fun matching up the pom-poms to the color in the butterfly’s wings. It’s a wonderful quiet time or busy bag activity, too.
Yarn-Wrapped Birds from artycraftykids.com: Celebrate spring with some lovely yarn-wrapped birds sitting on tree branches made from natural twigs. You can do this in the fall or winter, too—a robin would be a great winter bird to make!
Dinosaur Feet from redtedart.com: Stomp around the house and yard in cool dino feet! There are several different ways to design them in this post, so no set of dinosaur feet will look alike.
Cardboard Reindeer from kidsactivitiesblog.com: How cute is this little cardboard reindeer complete with clothespin legs to make it stand up? If you’re into the rustic decor, it’ll blend in beautifully. It’s simple enough for kids to make, but adults will love this craft just as much as children.
This list of 26 cardboard crafts for kids is perfect for rainy days, school projects, or just because. We’ve rounded up some easy and fun ways to create cool things with simple materials like cardboard boxes–plus, they’re all free!
You can make a rocket ship, camera, unicorn, laptop…anything you want! Check these out next time the weather turns sour, so your little ones never get bored again. What are your favorite ideas on this list?
Let us know in the comments below!