I am so excited about how these recycled crafts for kids turned out! Recycled paper seed balls are simple, inexpensive to create, and a perfect hand made gift.
I teach young children so I wanted to find a craft that children could take home and give as a gift. These pulp paper balls filled with seeds are a perfect gift or activity – especially in the spring and summer.
This is a great activity to create outside. It can get a little bit messy. However, if some of the seeds fall on the ground as children create, you will simply end up having beautiful flowers growing all around – like we did!
This is also a great activity to do with children during the summer. It is a great craft for kids and an easy way to reuse materials. Plus, children can then watch their seed balls grow over the summer.
Crafts for Kids Materials
I love doing this craft to show children how they can reuse materials instead of throwing them out. It is a great activity to show children how to effectively recycle paper to create something wonderful.
For this craft you will need,
- Paper to be Recycled
- Tissue Paper (Optional)
- Strainer (Optional)
- Flower Seeds
- Blender/Hand Mixer
There are a few ways that you can create your seed ball pulp paper. An adult can either create the pulp before hand and have children mix in the seeds and create their seed ball or children can mix and get their hands into the pulp paper and then create the seed balls.
How to Make Your Pulp Paper Ball
We started by using a huge bag of shredded recycled paper from our school office, but any paper ready to be recycled will work.
To start, rip up paper by hand. This is a great sensory activity for children to be involved in.
Next, add warm water to your paper and let the paper soak for a few minutes. Once the paper has sat for awhile, I used a hand mixer and blended the paper down to a pulp. (Paper can have dyes in it so it is best to use a mixer that is not also used for food.)
You don’t have to use a mixer. If you rip or cut the paper up very small your seed ball will also work. It may just be a bit chunkier than if you blend it with a mixer. The longer you leave it in the water the more it will break down.
Next, put some of the paper pulp into a strainer. Let the water drain from the pulp. You don’t want to get all of the water out of your pulp. If it becomes too dry the balls will simply break apart.
I gave each group of children a bowl with the paper pulp. Everyone then made a ball just smaller than a tennis ball.
For some groups I added a mixture of flower seeds to the pulp and they then mixed them in.
Other groups wanted to add their seeds while they made their seed ball so they rolled the balls into the seeds to cover the outside. I used wildflower seeds, but most seeds will work.
Make sure that whatever seeds you use are safe for children to touch. Some seed packs have added chemicals to help the seeds grow, but are not safe to handle.
Once children had formed their seed ball, they then squeezed out some more of the water.
Since we were using the seed balls to give as a gift, we decided to add some colored tissue paper to the outside of the ball. The tissue paper was perfect to add some color to the creations.
As long as the ball is still quite wet, the tissue paper will stick to the paper pulp without having to add anything else.
To dry, I laid them out on trays. The balls took a lot longer to dry then I thought they would. I would suggest allowing about a week for the seed balls to fully dry.
Depending on the size of the ball and how much water is left in it they can take quite some time to fully dry. They will be quite hard when they are done.
If you don’t have time to let them dry, or you are not giving them as a gift, you can plant the pulp paper ball when it is still wet.
Ideas for Your Completed Seed Ball
Once they are dry, you can wrap your seed ball up in a piece of tissue paper, or simply a string. We then attached a note to the seed ball.
A link to the FREE printable copy of the note is available at the bottom of this post. You can hole punch the note and then attach it to the string/ wrapping on the seed ball.
To use the seed paper ball, simply dig a small hole in the ground, and plant the ball. You don’t need to bury the ball deep and it is best to follow the instructions for the type of flower you included in your seed ball.
Make sure to water generously and take care of your seeds.
Soon you will see your plant begin to sprout!
I love the fact that these seed balls are made of recycled paper and hand made by children.
It makes for a special and meaningful craft or gift and is perfect for spring or summer time. Children will love watching something they made, from recycled materials, turn into some new and beautiful.
Within a few days our seed paper balls began to sprout.
Crafts for Kids Extension Ideas
The ball shape is easy for children to create and looks great. If you are looking to add extra detail to your seed ball, we tried using cookie cutters.
Simply push some of you paper pulp into a cookie cutter so that when it dries it takes on the cookie cutter shape. We created star shaped seed balls and even a puzzle shaped seed ball. The possibilities are endless!
Recycled Crafts for Kids Printable Note
To download the note to attach to your own seed bombs, click the image below. By subscribing you will gain access to my FREE Resource Library full of printable learning activities and pages.
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More Crafts for Kids and Hands-On Teaching Ideas
If you are looking for more learning activities to do with children at home or school, below is a collection of my favourite and most popular activities for kids. From arts and crafts to scavenger hunts and escape rooms, there is lots to keep kids busy and learning.
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