Finding crafts that nursing home patients will enjoy making can be a daunting task. This is a guide about craft ideas for nursing home patients.
I work at a nursing home as an activities director. I need ideas for new and exciting things I can do with them. Please keep in mind, that not many of them can do anything. Many only have the use of one hand.
I volunteer at a local nursing home and do crafts several times a month.
Ideas that have worked well:
Rubber stamping -- I ink the stamps and place them on the paper where the resident wants it. The resident pushes down on the stamp to make the imprint. Most residents have the strength to push down on the stamp. We have made pictures and greeting cards from the stamps.
Stickers -- we have made pictures and cards using stickers. The helper removes the sticker from the sticker sheet and the resident places it where she wants.
Last week we made foam door hangers for the residents' rooms. The kits had self-adhesive letters and stamps. I brought my digital camera and printer to the nursing home and took pictures of the residents which they added to the foam hanger. I bought the kits from the Oriental Trading Company craft catalogue -- about $5 for a set of 12.
Read simple poetry to them leaving off the last word, only works if it rhymes. They can usually figure it out. Go on line and find a site aout Wise Old Sayings, like easy come easy ... go) they finish the saying. Go to thrift store and buy inexpensive games like Blurt, Password and donate them to the activity staff. Look up trivia on the internet for the residents, but make it fairly easy.
There are so many small craft projects, with assistance that the elderly, handicapped and disabled can do! My most important suggestion is not to involve them in a lengthy project, but one they can accomplish in a short time frame.
Here are a few ideas, but use your imagination as there are a lot of brilliant members on Thrifty Fun!
I guarantee these projects will be a hit and very rewarding, both ways! Their motor skills and abilities may be impaired but, with your help, the possibilities are limitless! Please add your own creative ideas to this! Thank you!
By Missy MM from OH
Can anyone help me with clay pot crafts or any other easy craft ideas for a nursing home residents' craft day.
By MargieT from Australia
You could try getting some small branches, styrofoam & eggs with ribbon or string hangers. Hang eggs on it. Or paint it & plant some herbs or flowers in it in a sunny window. Go on FaveCrafts.com, they have tons of crafts for everything! Literally! Hope this helps. Happy Easter! Karen :D
Hi Margie. I also work at a nursing home running crafts activities. I've started to blog about it to share ideas. Last month we made a Halloween haunted house with cardboard, cellophane and water paints.
This month we're making Fascinators - fancy head bands for the Melbourne cup. Bought a pack of headbands from the reject shop for $3 and the rest were things I had at home.
Next month (Dec) were painting cardboard cut out christmas trees and decorating with stickers.
Hope this helps!
I need a January craft to make decorations for the inside doors at a nursing home.
Since we get most of our snow in January I do a snowman theme. This year I did a board saying Let it snow with tiny punched snowflakes from glittery looking bags I got at the dollar tree and snowman figures. The background is red and it makes the snowflakes stand out. I think it looks great. My craft projects will be snowmen. Hope this helps some.
I am trying to find online craft ideas, with directions, for elderly people in a nursing home. I have found a few things on creatingtogetherjournal.com, but it only gave me two sample ideas because it is a craft magazine. I volunteer and don't have the money to buy a craft book. If anyone has suggestions, as to where online to find ideas, please respond. Thanks.
Another good site in addition to the ones Patty Lynn posted is:
I also use the sewing pages at about.com for free patterns.
The neat thing about all of the sites, the ones Patty Lynn posted, and the one I posted, is that you can sign up for free e-newsletters to your inbox-some are weekly and others are daily. I get several from the about.com site, and the favcraft one too-lots of great ideas!
Try FaveCrafts.com They have easy crafts & recycled crafts & everything for all ages & experience levels. Good Luck & have Fun! : )
I work volunteer hours working an assisted living home trying to earn my silver award for Girl Scouts. We do crafts every other week or so and we do a craft usually for each holiday. We have done a Halloween craft but now I need ideas for a Thanksgiving craft that the residents could hang on their door. These crafts need to be not very complicated and not use expensive supplies. These people's hands are shaky and have trouble with gluing many parts together. They love to paint (they use the foam brushes for sponge painting) so painting is okay.
Kim from CA
Try felt and double sided carpet tape, with felt you can make turkeys or wreaths, or my kids made a christmas tree out of felt added grommets to put lights thru and made orniments of felt with glitter and cequins and sticky velcro for the back, that was about 17 years ago and it's still holding up for the grandsons to decorate.
I'm looking for creative ideas for my activity calendar for next month. I have bingo, wine & fruit, birthday party, movie & popcorn. I have some crafts, I need more ideas for the males at my facility. Please help
I am starting my summer clinicals shortly with elders from a local retirement home. I will have a mix of men and women with varying degrees of ability. Anyone have any ideas for "therapy inspired" craft projects? I need something different. The elderly at the retirement home get to see groups like us every semester. I want to really engage them cognitively, socially, and physically (fine motor mostly). But here is the kicker - it MUST be fun! I don't want to bore them with "oh, this again".
By KisanOTA from Appleton, WI
You could have them make "fascinators". They are the pretty little "hats" that are so popular now. Check them out on line...a lot of the British royal family started wearing them and now a lot of people make them and wear them. They are just a piece of netting with hand made flowers or bows (or use your imagination) glued or sewn on to them.
For the ladies: glue or sew a small hair clip to the back, so they can wear it in their hair. For the men, glue or sew a safety pin on the back, so they can wear it as a "boutinere". (Sorry about the spelling!!) Then they can make fancy finger sandwiches and dainties and cold lemonade and have a garden party (which can be indoors or out). Have them make simple decorations: table centerpieces, paper flowers, etc. and play some soft background music.
This could be a "progressive craft" that would take a few sessions to put everything together, with the garden party as a fun goal to look forward to.
I am looking for some easy and cheap crafty ideas for Father's day for disabled, elderly residents at an independent living facility.
By katskits from Bowling Green, KY
Make a checker board and checkers. Instead of using a pizza box for the checker board as per the instructions, you could have them use whatever you can think of like cardboard or foam core.
Another suggestion is those little 6-packs of plants, some potting soil, spoons to dip the soil, some cheap little plastic pots. Have them transplant a plant into a pot. Tell them to water as soon as they get them home. They can keep their plants in a window. If this isn't 'crafty' enough, they could paint designs on the rim of the pot, but not the pot itself so they will be able to carry it home without having to touch the paint.
Is this for the seniors to make? Or as gifts to give them? If it is for gifts for them, I would suggest getting some fabric and making small "pouches" for eyeglasses, remotes, etc. I made one for my grandfather from some denim. 3 feet long by 1 foot wide. Put right sides together. Fold over about 1/3, so you have a pouch with one longer side. Sew up the two sides of the pouch. Flip right side out. Tuck the long end under the sofa cushion? Under the mattress? Under their bottom on their wheel chair? Wherever, holds those things that are always getting put down and misplaced. He kept his glasses, remotes, and cordless phone in his...you can make hems, decorate, etc..or leave them really simple. If not hemming, use pinking shears to cut the edges and use non-raveling material.
I would like ideas (and pictures) of easy crafts using recycled items that nursing home residents would enjoy making.
By Sandi from Brookville, IN
Use any kind of can or plastic item and cut tissue paper flowers and decoupage them to it. In some cases you can use only a few to spruce up a room. Makes a quick, fun and thrifty craft.
I run craft classes at my local nursing home. Last week we did a class on Van Gogh, talked about his life and his 12 sunflowers painting. I painted a yellow vase on butchers paper then with green sticky tape made the stems and they glued their painted sunflowers onto them.
Recently we did a Mary Poppins activity with coloured pencils and talked about the book.
In the past we've made bubble wrap bunting with cardboard, paint and bubble wrap.
I am looking for some simple craft ideas for colorful Bedford bendable ribbon. I bought it at a garage sale so have no patterns or ideas.
I have 1/8, 1/4, 3/4, and 1 inch wide metallic bendable ribbon in red, white, pink, blue, and green. I want to use it for a craft project for my resident's in a nursing home. I need simple and easy ideas for a fun project. Can anyone help me?
By Karen K.
Hi. I bought a magazine from a garage sale with an idea using the bendable ribbon, but I'm having trouble finding the ribbon. One of the easy ideas is to take 18 inches of 1/4" red and 18 inches of 1/4" silver (or white) and wrap them diagonally around a pencil. Bend them into a candy cane shape, then use 9 inches of 1/4" green to make a bow and attach it.
Another idea is to make a wreath using a 24 inch piece of the 3/4" green ribbon. Wrap it around a pencil to make a spiral, then grab each end and turn one clockwise while turning the other counter-clockwise to make a larger spiral. Make a small cut 1/2way through each end, then interlock them to form a circle. Make a bow using the red ribbon and attach it to the wreath.
Both ideas look really easy and really cute to use as an ornament or just a decoration. Hope this helps and is easy to understand :)
Make hoops of color hung on fish line in groups by the craft room, in the windows like stained glass windows, or in the hallway to the day room.
Approximate Time: two sessions about 30 minutes each or as long as it takes.
I left the hoop at the nursing home when it was to be sold and my job eliminated. Best job I ever had. This is just a suggestion. I never thought to make photos of our projects because I loved my job and had no idea the job would end.
By Barbara from Ewing, NJ
Looking for craft ideas to engage retirement home residents. Here are a few suggestions to engage them in conversation whilst doing crafts.
Sketch out 12 sunflowers and a vase. Give each person a flower or two to paint in. Discuss the life of Van Gogh and show residents how to paint flowers in Van Gogh style using small brush strokes and dots.
This is a good Valentine's activity. Draw a few locks on cardboard and discuss the Love Locks bridge in Paris with residents. They then paint or colour in the locks and write the names of people or things they love on each lock. Then glue them to the bridge.
I am looking for an Easter craft for girl scouts to do for nursing home residents. Any help would be appreciated. -Penny
I volunteer at a local nursing home and do crafts with the residents a couple times a month.