Lottie Makes

Hello! I am a mum to 3 boys! Sharing our play ideas and activities and inspiration for toddlers and children. From tuff tray play to sensory play, small world play, cardboard crafts and outdoor play.

Hello! I am a mum to 3 boys! Sharing our play ideas and activities and inspiration for toddlers and children. From tuff tray play to sensory play, small world play, cardboard crafts and outdoor play.

Learning through Play with Jigsaw Puzzles

We are a family of jigsaw lovers. I always ask for a jigsaw for Christmas (along with Lego!) and always buy my boys Jigsaws for birthdays and Christmas. Most recently we have come across some beautiful wooden jigsaws, handmade by a family in Derbyshire – Just Jigsaws. I was lucky enough to visit their workshop…

Play dough Travel Activites

We love play dough and it is great packed up in a little container with other items to take on trips and holidays for entertaining the kids. We take ours on long journeys in the car, on the plane and in the caravan. You will need: I will quite often just grab whatever comes to…

Sand and Water Ideas for Babies and Toddlers

Exciting ways to explore and play with Sand and water. Whether it is being used in the mud kitchen, sand pit, water tray, measuring for potion making, toddlers and babies love sand and water activities. Filling and tipping, transporting, digging, mixing, pouring and splashing. Play can be as simple as a tray filled with sand…

Autumn Play Idea Gallery for Children

I don’t know about you, but we love Autumn in our house. Watching the leaves change colour, Autumn natural treasures to collect such as acorns, pinecones and conkers. Making leaf kebabs, autumn mud kitchens and Pumpkin activities. Leaf painting, crafts and baking. Before we dive into our activities below, I’d love to share with you…

100 Tuff Tray Play Ideas

100 Tuff Tray Play Ideas! The popular Tuff Tray is such a versatile resource to have for children at home or in your setting. With or without a stand it can be used for many small world set ups, messy play, investigation, explorations, adventures and crafts. Tray Play filled with provocations and invitations to play…

13 recycled craft ideas for children

Turn your old cardboard boxes, egg boxes and toilet roll tubes into creative treasures that provide hours of fun and play. Upcycled and recycled crafts are cheap and often simple to make with a little imagination. Here are our 13 recycled craft ideas for children to make and play with.

Nature Trail Collections and Natural Sensory Play in a Tinker Tray

In the warm Spring sunshine we love to go on nature trails to collect an array of beautiful things! We really try hard to listen to the birds, the leaves rustling in the trees, birds singing and the crackling of twigs under our feet. We love collecting and displaying items in our tinker tray, where…

Fairy Small World Play in the Tuff Tray

Fairies are a popular theme. We love tuff tray play ideas. Our tuff tray gets used for a variety of activities and themes. This time is was small world play with fairies and our recycled cardboard treehouse.

Making Dinosaur Skeleton Bones

A great topic for boys and girls! My boys love Dinosaurs so I bought some shaped biscuit cutters which included the bone structures of them! We decided not to make biscuits – but used Air Dry Clay instead!

Egg Box Finger Mouse

These recycled egg box finger mice are super cute and easy to make. You can then play with your Finger Mouse, creating small world play scenes and whole families of mice!

Exploring Circles and Basic Fractions

Our topic this morning was circles. How many circles can you find and identify? Followed by Pizza making with basic fractions and finally we set up a small world based around a circle.

Egg Box Chinese Dragon

A lovely simple craft for Chinese New Year. Create this lovely Egg Box Chinese Dragon to display in your setting year after year.

Air Dry Clay Christmas Decorations

These are so easy to do and my boys really enjoyed this one. They make ideal handmade Christmas gifts for teachers and family members. Ours will be wrapped in tissue paper to give out at school and for Christmas Day.

How to make a Fairy Princess Wand

I borrowed my little niece for this activity, as I have 3 boys and none were interested in this craft project! I have a love for all things fairy, princess, sparkly and pink….so these tick all the boxes!

Peg Doll Pom Pom Fairy

Pom Poms are really simple to make and by adding a traditional wooden peg and a few extra details, you can make these gorgeous Peg Doll Pom Pom Fairies to hang from your Christmas tree!

Christmas Cork Characters

We love our recycled cork characters and these Christmas Corks are a lovely craft for the run up to Christmas. The Nativity Scene takes pride of place on our Fireplace and it is especially lovely as it was made by hand by us as a family.

Stop Motion Animation Winter Scene

We love creating small world scenes, but why not add an extra level of learning by incorporating ICT into the mix? Create your own basic stop motion animation. You can do this with Lego set ups or any small world scene that you create in any theme.

Papier Mache Dragon Egg

Papier Mache is a great medium to work with, we use it quite a lot and have made Caves, Volcanoes, and Dragon and Dinosaur eggs. This time, we have made a Dragon Egg, although it can be easily re-purposed to a Dinosaur Egg.

Recycled Toilet Roll Tube Ninja Turtles

Toilet roll tubes are ideal for simple crafts. From characters to Christmas decorations and crackers to car garages and castles – recycling these everyday household items is a great way to start crafting. Here, we made Ninja Turtles!

Wand Making Craft

The Harry Potter craze has had a huge impact in our house. My eldest loves all things Harry Potter, and I have to admit as do I! These handmade Magic Wands are easy to make and so effective.

Great Fire of London – Story in a Shoe Box

Creating a small world in a shoe box is a lovely, manageable craft project for children. This simple but effective story in a shoe box – depicting The Great Fire of London was done for my 8yr olds Creative Homework Project for school.

Egg Box Flower craft

Egg box flowers are so simple, and yet so beautiful. Once made, the flowers can be used in a variety of ways. Find out below how we made ours and what you can do with them.

Magical Dream Jars

These magical dream jars were inspired by the Roald Dahl Dream Jars. They are really simple to make and children can choose and fill their own jars with whatever takes their fancy. Dragons, Unicorns, Mermaids, Fairies, Pirates.

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