Ancient Egyptian Jewelry Crafts for Kids

by Eliza Martinez Google

    The ancient Egyptians are often depicted in history as dripping with jewelry. This might not be entirely accurate, but using these pictures is one way to teach toddlers and preschoolers a little bit about a different culture. They might not grasp too much, but making jewelry together is fun and fosters many important developmental skills. So, go ahead and deck yourselves out with beads and baubles for the sake of fun and learning.

    Materials

    If you and your child are avid crafters, you probably have enough supplies on hand to make yourself Egyptian worthy in no time. Shiny beads and yarn are simple materials that can be used to make necklaces and bracelets. Foam visors make great crowns. Don't forget the sparkle. Use fake rhinestones, plastic gems, glitter or sequins to lend your jewelry an authentic feel. Gold and silver paint creates a real-looking craft, as well. Crayons, markers, glue and paintbrushes are also ideal for making jewelry, especially for children under age 3, because they are fun without posing a choking hazard, because these objects have a diameter greater than 1 3/4 inches.

    Making the Jewelry

    The simplest way to make Egyptian jewelry is to string beads or large pieces of pasta dyed with food coloring onto yarn or other types of string. If you're using beads and your kids are 3 years old or under, make sure the items have a diameter of at least 1 3/4 inches. The Egyptians used many bright colors so use beads in a range of colors and mix and match them to your heart's desire. Glue rhinestones or other sparkly materials to a foam visor to create a crown. Or drape it around your neck for a large necklace much like royalty wore in ancient Egypt. Cut toilet paper tubes in half and decorate with paints, crayons or markers to make cuff bracelets. Cut a paper plate or cardstock circle in half and decorate with your favorite supplies to create a yoke necklace similar to those popular in ancient Egypt.

    Safety

    Toddlers are known for putting everything into their mouth. When you're working with small crafting supplies, such as beads or string, make sure they aren't being tasted to prevent a choking scare. Don't let your toddler or preschooler wear long strings of beads when she isn't supervised. She could accidentally swallow a bead or get the string wrapped around her neck, making it hard to breathe. Use nontoxic glue, crayons, markers and paints just in case she gets them into her mouth before you can stop her. For children under 3, stick with glitter, paint, crayons, makers and beads larger than 1 3/4 inches, so that your fun craft doesn't turn into a safety scare.

    What She'll Learn

    You'll both be having so much fun making Egyptian jewelry that you won't realize that your toddler or preschooler is also learning something. Placing beads onto the string, even if she needs your help, helps her develop fine motor skills. Making patterns with the beads is an early math skill and learning to cut and paste will serve her well as she begins school. As you construct your crafts, identify colors and shapes to reinforce important school abilities.

    About the Author

    Eliza Martinez has written for print and online publications. She covers a variety of topics, including parenting, nutrition, mental health, gardening, food and crafts. Martinez holds a master's degree in psychology.

    Photo Credits

    • Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images