our everyday life

Craft Activities for Teaching Respect and Responsibility

by Piaf Azul

While teaching your child the value of respect and responsibility is a top priority for you, she might be more interested in catching ladybugs and sneaking treats from the pantry. Transform these themes from a dull lecture to a hands-on craft activity and you're more likely to get your little one interested in respect and responsibility.

What Are Respect and Responsibility?

Respect and responsibility can be difficult to define. Help your child dig deeper into what these words mean by creating a bulletin board dedicated to these values. Ask her to cut out pictures from magazines that exemplify responsibility and attach them to the board. When she observes people behaving respectfully, have her describe the incident on a sticky note and add that as well. Invite her to draw pictures for the bulletin board of how she plans to exemplify respect and responsibility in her daily life.

Community Crafting

One way to teach respect and responsibility is to help others in the community. Your child can demonstrate her respect for the elderly by making holiday cards for people at a senior center. Or she might choose to make cards for children in foster care or to send to those serving in the military. Have her paint a wooden sign reminding people not to litter, and display it in the front yard. For maximum learning opportunities, invite her to come up with her own ways to show responsibility in her community through crafting.

Celebrate Different Cultures

Encourage your child to respect and appreciate other cultures through crafts. Make dragon puppets out of egg cartons for Chinese New Year and feathered masks for Mardi Gras. During the winter holidays, she can color in the outlines of a menorah for Hanukkah or weave pieces of construction paper together to make a Kwanzaa place mat. As you craft with your child, talk to her about the origin of each holiday, and help her find the corresponding countries on a world map.

Respect Puppets

Invite your child to make several puppets using paper bags, construction paper and markers. Place the bags upside down with the square intended for the bottom facing up. This will be the puppet's face, with the mouth opening at the bottom fold. Cut and tape down eyes and a nose, using markers to add details such as eyebrows, eyelashes or a beard. Ask your child to use the completed puppets to act out a scene where one character is showing responsibility, such as helping a friend or apologizing for a mistake

About the Author

Piaf Azul is a writer based in Austin, Texas. Since 2000, her work has appeared on numerous websites, including A Healthy Me, My Online Wellness and CVS Caremark. Azul is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Latin American studies.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images