Do you need an easy autism awareness project to make with children? I made these bracelets with Ryan’s first grade class and it worked out really well. They were quick and easy to make. And most of all, the kids really liked them.
Here are the materials you will need.
1. yellow, dark blue, light blue, and red plastic pony beads (One pack of 360 beads in each color will be enough for a class of about 23. You will have some left over. I found these beads at Wal-Mart.)
2. elastic cord (This cord is located next to the pony beads in Wal-Mart.)
3. old puzzle pieces for charms (I found a 100 piece puzzle with an ocean scene at the dollar store. Most of the pieces were blue, so it worked out perfectly. You can also spray paint the puzzle pieces blue.)
4. craft punch (You need a paper punch that makes a very small hole.)
5. small metal split rings (These are found in the jewelry section of the craft store. I like the oval rings best.)
6. masking tape
First, make the puzzle piece charm by punching a hole in a puzzle piece. Open the split ring using tweezers, slip the puzzle piece onto the ring, then close the ring back up. Next, cut about an 8 inch piece of elastic. Fold a small piece of tape on the end of the elastic so the beads won’t fall off the end when you are stringing them. Then string on 24 beads. You will need six of each color. Make whatever pattern you like best. Remember, this bracelet will fit a child’s wrist. You will need a longer elastic and more beads for an adult. Now add the charm. String the ring onto the elastic. Tie two or three knots and trim the ends. The bracelet is done.
I found it’s a lot easier to make bracelet kits for each child instead trying to pass out all of the materials one by one. Fill a ziplock bag with all the materials you need for one bracelet: one 8 inch elastic cord with tape on the end, 6 yellow beads, 6 red beads, 6 light blue beads, 6 dark blue beads, and one puzzle piece charm. Then give each child one bag to work with.
There are many different ways you can make this same bracelet. Craft stores have many different beautiful beads. If you decide to use heavier beads, you might want to put a drop of glue on the knot to keep it from opening up. You can even buy puzzle piece charms. I found some inexpensive metal charms at Oriental Trading. Have fun. If you try this, let me know how your bracelets turned out.