For our 17th Advent activity, we made candy canes and wreaths using propeller or tri-beads. This is such a classic Christmas craft. I remember doing it many years ago when I was a Girl Scout or Brownie. To do these, you simply take a pipe cleaner (I cut them in half first) and slide the beads on in either a red/white pattern for the candy canes or a green/red pattern for the wreaths. My two boys both wanted to make candy canes. They were very patient and worked carefully. I was really impressed with the focus shown by my three-year-old. He said his pattern out loud and kept track of it the whole way: red-white-red-white. It was very cute to watch him. He was really precise. While the boys beaded their candy canes, I decided to bead a wreath. It was fun. It's nice to be able to actually complete a project in a short period of time. What a feeling of accomplishment! The DH even got in on the action. He rarely crafts anything with us, but I invited him to join us and he made a little wreath ornament. He said he had never done that type of craft when he was little. And he seemed to enjoy doing it with us. At any rate, I think it was great for the boys to see Daddy creating something just like them.
Big boy hands
Little boy hands
To keep track of the beads, I gave each boy a muffin tin with the beads divided by color. This helped a lot and we only had a few end up on the floor.
Here is a finished candy cane on the tree.
And my little wreath on the tree. I used a pattern of five greens, then one red.