Easy Craft Ideas Keep Elders Stimulated
(Grand Rapids, MI)
Easy Craft Ideas
Working in the long-term care center, I have discovered that a majority of the elderly women, and even some of the men, love to make crafts for not only their family and friends, but for grandchildren and homeless shelters, shelters for abused women and families, and most especially, for children's hospitals.
Doing things for others gives seniors a sense of purpose, and I encourage it whenever possible. Coming up with easy craft ideas isn't always easy, but by breaking otherwise large projects into manageable pieces, I get most of my groups involved, not only in crafting, but in social interaction.
For example, instead of having a senior make an entire afghan, I have each senior make a single square. We utilize the larger needles and bulkier yarns that make it easier for those with a lack of strength or otherwise less-than-perfect dexterity to knit or crochet. Of course, I always cater crafts based on the capabilities of the individual.
For those that might find it difficult to grasp knitting needles or crochet hooks, I suggest things like making greeting cards, get well cards, or other types of stationery where they can utilize stamps, glue on shapes, decorations, and so forth.
A visit to your local hobby store is certain to give you a variety of ideas for seniors of varying cognitive and physical capabilities. For those who like to paint, I often pick up the precut or designed wooden holiday decorations or ornaments and have the seniors paint them. They are used to decorate the facility or local hospitals, businesses, and charity groups.