African Crafts for Kids to Keep Them Busy This Summer

Georgina Fihosy

Posted on 25 July 2020

African Crafts for Kids to Keep Them Busy This Summer

Home schooling is coming to an end, but the task of keeping the children entertained during the day continues. As Britain heads into the summer holidays, I have put together some African crafts for kids that will keep them entertained. In my house, we love making and doing, hence I began my own greeting card business. And the African influence is obviously important, as you can tell from my designs.

I hope you can find some craft activities for kids at home that will entertain your family. Getting together and getting messy with glue and glitter and the like is such a fun, memorable way to spend the summer holidays. Craft is great for concentration, fine motor skills and gaining that sense of achievement when it all comes together. Keep reading to find my suggestions for African crafts for kids.


Create a Woven Mat from Paper

A popular African craft activity in the US is to weave mats from paper and card. This often takes place around the African-American holiday of Kwanzaa and children create their pieces in the traditional red, black and green associated with the celebration or in a variety of vibrant colours to represent beautiful African print fabrics.

For this African craft, you need a piece of card in one colour and two sheets of different coloured paper, plus some scissors.

● Using the card for the base, cut lines that run across horizontally, 2cm from each side and 2cm apart from each other.
● Cut both sheets of paper into 2cm strips.
● Thread a paper strip through the card. The first colour should go down through the first line, up through the second, down through the third and so on.
● Take a strip of the other colour and thread it next to the previous strip, but this time going up through the first line, down through the second and so on.
● Repeat these steps until you have filled the card and have a stunning woven mat to show for your efforts!


  Credit: Mat Weaving - copyright BTB Paper

Make an Adinkra Printing

Adinkra are West African symbols used in fabrics, pottery and even imprinted into buildings. When used in clothing, you often find a square grid or frame, containing one or more of the 122 Adinkra symbols in the middle. Why not use this as a way for your children to learn about these symbols originally created by the Ashanti while they enjoy indulging in African crafts for kids?

To make an Adinkra print, you need a piece of paper, some black paint, a wide-toothed comb and a potato!
● Dip the comb into the paint and create a square grid on the paper.
● Cut the potato in half and create either a traditional Adinkra design or invent one of your own.
● Dip the potato into the paint and stamp it on the paper inside the grid square. You can either place one print there or fill the grid with prints. It is up to you!

Adinkra Printing

 Credit: Adinkra Printing - copyright


African Animal Hand Printing

One of the most simple African crafts for kids is to create your own safari at home. Pick your favourite animal native to Africa and use your hands to put it down on paper. Simply find a paint colour similar to that of the animal, dip your hand in and try and recreate the shape of the animal on paper.

When the paint dries, add horns, eyes, teeth, spots or anything else that will bring your African animal to life!

african animal hand printing

 Credit: Animal Prints - copyright


Make Your Own African Instruments

Not all craft activities for kids need to be messy. Some are noisy instead! When your children need to let out that built-up energy, you can channel that into something (hopefully) musical. Get them to build and then play their own African-inspired instruments.

Cover up the end of a kitchen roll tube and pour dried beans or rice in. Cover the other end and then you have an instant rainstick! The kids can decorate the outside of the instrument and then shake it to their heart’s content!

Using kitchen items such as pots and pans, jam jars, tupperware and anything else you can get your hands on, you could create your own African drums. Take a look at some videos of traditional African drumming online and try to copy it in your own home.

african instruments

 Credit: Rainstick - copyright 


Doing Some African Crafts for Kids?

I hope you enjoyed these African crafts for kids. Make sure you send me pictures of them through my social channels when you do them. I’d love to see your summer holiday handiwork.


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