Unleash your creativity: Activities, books & events for grade schoolers

By Hal, Rainbow Services Librarian

Crafting is a fun way to express yourself. The library has all kinds of resources to support and encourage young artists. Let’s explore a few!

Create & craft with Creativebug

Creativebug is one of my favorite resources. To get started, you’ll need to create an account with your Oak Park library card and log into Creativebug. Find step-by-step instructions on how to do just that »

There you’ll find video tutorials for all ages that will guide you through every step of a project, from gathering the materials to the finished product. You’ll also find learning journeys, a series of classes that to help you practice.

Three projects I recommend

  • Embroidered Constellations: Bring the night sky into your home with hand-embroidered zodiac constellations. This project uses simple stitches and is great for beginners.
  • Magic Wands: Cultivate some magic in your life with these paper mache wands. This project invites everyone to use their imaginations. 
  • Friendship Bracelets: Celebrate your friendship with a bracelet! You can make them for yourself, give them as gifts, or trade them with your besties. This tutorial shows five different bracelet designs.

If you’re looking for more crafting ideas, check out this Kid’s Crafting Journey, a series of classes that, according to Creativebug, “cover a range of topics and allow kids to work at their own pace, explore nature, and have a blast using inexpensive supplies you might already have at home.”

Check out Discovery Kits

If you’d like to try out a new craft or creative activity, but don’t know where to begin, use your Oak Park library card to check out one of our Discovery Kits. They come with the tools you need to get started like supplies and instructions. 

Read these books

Want to explore more ways to express yourself through creating and crafting? Check out some of these books.

Attend events

Want to join us for hands-on, imaginative, creative fun? On Monday through Friday, you can visit the Acorn Lab in the Main Library Children's Services Area from 3 to 6 pm to use our tools to build or craft with recycled materials.

Also, register for these upcoming events:

Leaf Hunting & Art
Monday, November 6, 4-4:30 pm, Main Library

Autumn is a spectacular season! Go on a leaf hunt through Scoville Park, collect your favorites, and get ready to make your very own copies with paper and crayon or turn them into art. Best for kids ages 4 and up. Weather permitting. Register now »

Magic & Adventure Club: Let's Play Untold, a Storytelling Adventure Game!
Wednesday, November 8, 3:30-4:30 pm, Main Library

Do you love stories about magic and adventure like Wings of Fire or tabletop roleplaying games like Dungeons & Dragons? Join us for Magic & Adventure Club! With the power of our imaginations and collaborative storytelling games, we'll embark on adventures to other worlds together. This month, we'll play Untold, a storytelling adventure game. Using special storytelling dice for inspiration, we'll become both the authors and the heroes of a story set in a magical world of our own creation. Register now »

Diwali Crafts
Saturday, November 11, 2-5 pm, Main Library

Join us in making Diyas and lanterns in celebration of Diwali (also known as the Festival of Lights and held this year on November 12). The crafted Diyas and Lanterns will be a part of the library's Diwali display in the Main Library! Best for ages 9+. Register now »

Button Maker Fun
Wednesday, November 15, 3-4 pm, Maze Branch

Drop in to make some great new pin-back buttons to decorate your backpack! Use our art or make your own, all supplies provided. Best for elementary-aged kids. Register now »

Stories & Nature Crafts for Preschoolers
Wednesday, November 29, 11 am-12 pm, Dole Branch

Join us for stories, music, songs, and nature-themed crafts in this storytime devoted to preschoolers. We will have a fun time exploring books and art together in this hands-on interactive program. For ages 3-6 and caregivers. Register now »

Winter Crafting: Cross Stitch
Sunday, December 17, 1-2 pm, Main Library

Join us for a fun winter craft! Together we will learn how to cross stitch snowflakes. We'll start by practicing some simple designs, and then learn how to create our own. Beginners are welcomed and encouraged! Register now »

Rainbow Services Librarian Hal

About Hal

Hal is a children’s librarian who specializes in serving LGBTQ+ young people and their allies. He is passionate about identity exploration through collaborative storytelling and imaginative play.