The kids really enjoyed the bell streamers we made a while ago, so I knew they would have fun playing with this rainbow and bits of gold streamer craft. It’s great for St. Patrick’s Day, spring, or a rainbow theme, and it is a very easy craft to make.
- Dry beans
- Gold paint
- Ribbon (in the colors of the rainbow)
- Plastic bottle with lid
- Something to poke a hole in the lid
We started by painting a few dried beans gold. You can paint them however you like. We put the beans in a disposable cup, squirted a bit of acrylic paint into the cup, and used a craft stick to stir the beans until they were well coated. Then we dumped them out onto a plate to dry. I would suggest pouring them onto wax paper though. Ours were a bit stuck to the plate, so we had to pry them off.
Next I poked a hole in the lid. Use whatever tool you have handy. I happened to grab a wine opener out of the kitchen drawer. You want to make the hole big enough to pull the ribbon through but not so big that the beans and/or the ribbon can fall (or be pulled) out.
Cut the ribbon to your desired length. I made shorter strands for the baby and toddler and longer strands for the preschoolers.
Gather the ribbon. It actually looks like a rainbow if you put the ribbons in order and then pinch them all together before pushing through the hole. I didn’t do that for the first streamer I made, and you can tell a bit. But once they are playing, the ribbons go in all different directions anyway. Either way it looks pretty. (You can see the difference in the picture above and the picture below. Above I put them in order. Below I just pushed them through randomly.)
Tie the ends of the ribbon in a knot and cut off any long ends.
Place the beans inside the bottle. (Make sure the inside of the bottle is completely dry first.)
Tighten the lid onto the bottle. I did not hot glue the ribbon or the lid, but you may want to depending on your kids and how interested they will be in opening and closing the bottle. I expected the little ones to try, but they were so intrigued by the sounds of the beans and the colors of the ribbons that it wasn’t an issue.
Then let your little ones run, dance, shake, and explore with their rainbows and bits of gold!
We read two books to go along with this craft.
In The Leprechaun Who Lost His Rainbow a little girl shares special treasures of her own to help a leprechaun build a rainbow. I love that this story shows a leprechaun who is helpful and not as mischievous as most of the other stories we’ve found about leprechauns.
A Rainbow of My Own is about a little boy who wishes he had a rainbow of his own.
More St. Patrick’s Day Fun
Looking for more ideas? Try some of these fun St. Patrick’s Day activities from our archives.
And don’t forget to read some great books for St. Patrick’s Day too!
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