Get crafty, kids! Things to make and do across Ireland this summer
Published 09/05/2011 | 16:28
Let's face facts. Kids these days have it easy. Instead of phones made out of yogurt pots they've got Gameboy, Nintendo and X-Box.
OK, so it does keep them quiet and it does mean we're not risking life and limb every time we climb the stairs, but when it comes to keeping themselves entertained, kids these days wouldn't know the difference between a bowl of paper-mâché paste and a pack of sticky back plastic.
Is it time your kids got crafty? Here's some options to try this summer !
Dublin: The Dublin Children's Museum
Years ago, trips to museums were exactly that. Musty, boring and dull.
These days things are a lot more fun. The Dublin Children's Museum is Ireland's first interactive museum for the under 10's and is full of exciting exhibits to explore.
Designed specifically to reflect children's developmental needs, there's a roof garden, a wizard's lair and even a rocket ship to enjoy, and when it's time to get messy, there are daily workshops spanning everything from music and theater to arts and crafts. Should keep them busy!
Prices start from €2 for babies and €8.50 per adult.
For more information telephone 01 2176130.
Wicklow: The Chocolate Garden of Ireland
Families with a sweet tooth should find something to nibble in the Chocolate Garden of Ireland.
Based close to Tullow in county Wicklow, the garden is proof that everyone is a kid when it comes to the dark stuff.
There are interactive chocolate demonstrations, chocolate tastings and chocolate-making lessons for enthusiasts of all ages.
And if your budding chocolatiers find they need a break, there's an ice-cream parlor and coffee shop to retire to.
Workshops are priced at €12 for all ages.
Telephone 059 6481999 to book.
Cork: The Toy Soldier Factory
The Toy Solider Factory and visitor centre in Macroom, county Cork is a great place to spend an afternoon.
The working factory invites visitors to get involved in the manufacturing process and shows how toy soldier figurines are casted, moulded, spun and labeled.
When the demonstrations are over, if you find you've caught the craft bug, then the factory hosts daily painting workshops which are perfect for kids aged 6 and upwards.
Entrance to the factory is free and the painting workshop is priced at €5 per child.
For more information telephone 026 40222.
Cavan: Bear Essentials and Silver Bear Centre
Families looking to create their very own teddy bears picnic should make their way to the Bear Essentials and Silver Bear Centre in Cavan.
Budding toy makers can get busy and create their own teddy bear in the daily workshops and then take their new toy to explore the garden, greenhouse and playground.
In the event of any unforeseen bear emergencies the Silver Bear Centre also has an on-site teddybear hospital which is perfect for putting the stuffing back into your kids' favourite soft toys!
Entry to the gift shop and Silver Bear Centre is free of charge and workshops cost from €30 per head.
For more information telephone 049 9523461.
Dublin: Pompie Paints
Kids looking to create something they can take home will enjoy an afternoon at Pompie Paints.
Based at Leisureplex Stillorgan and Tallaght, the crafty day out costs €14 per child and is a chance for children to design and paint their own ceramics to take home.
Although best for children 5 and upwards, smaller children are also invited to create unique hand and foot paintings and if watching the kids have all the fun seems a bit unfair, parents are also encouraged to take part and create their own designs!
For more information visit leisureplex.ie