Toddlers naturally have creative and imaginative little brains, and for this reason, parents are encouraged to foster this through playtime activities inclusive of art projects. There is a wide range of the best arts and crafts for 3 year olds out there, and deciding which is ‘best’ or most beneficial to a young child can be quite an ordeal.
Helping to develop skills including hand-eye coordination and more, fun art projects for kids should definitely be incorporated into everyday playtime where possible.
If you’re seeking to buy your little one preschool arts and craft toys, our wide range below should enable you to narrow down the options and choose easily. Before we reveal our top choices in this category, we’ve put together some pointers for you below:
Considerations When Choosing Crafts for 3 Year Olds
Budget – when it comes to buying any new toy or activity set for a child, budget matters. The good news is that in the case of craft projects for kids there is plenty of choices right along the budget spectrum.
Whether you’re seeking to splash the cash on a blowout birthday present or simply are looking for a stocking filler, set a clear budget from the outset to narrow down options easily.
Personality – every child has their own personality and this should be honored when choosing a gift. There are lots of simple art projects toys out there that are sure to fit a range of personalities, however, we always recommend where possible choosing art activities for 2 year olds to 3 year olds that have some personalization.
You can do this by taking notice of a child’s likes and dislikes for certain things, for example, nature or tv characters. This should allow you to confidently choose cute craft ideas with ease.
Practicality – while many arts and crafts for preschoolers sets come ready with all the materials you need, in some cases you may be required to buy additional things such as glue, paints, and so on.
Think about whether or not you have the budget to do so and whether this is a practical option for you. We recommend buying basic craft materials to have in the house to help your child get busy with all of their favorite art and crafts whenever they wish.
Top Arts & Crafts for 3 Year Olds
We’ve covered some different areas to think about when choosing crafts projects for kids, so here are our top picks. Ranging fantastic water drawing kits right through to etching sets where your child will use an awesome new tool, there is plenty of inspiration below!
1. Melissa & Doug Water Drawing
First up is this wonderful set of 3 water wow activity pads by Melissa & Doug, each boasts a reusable water coloring book that draws upon the themes of under the sea, farms, and safaris. With 4 reusable pages, this is one of the best ideas for easy crafts for 3 year olds and it can even be taken along on travels too.
Promoting multiple skill development areas, the water painting book enhances fine motor skills, early reading and writing, as well as visual discrimination.
2. Wikki Stix Travel Set
Wikki Stix, the perfect travel companion carried around in a bright red case containing all your toddlers favorite Wikki Stix for imaginative play. Includes 144 Wikki Stix for ultimate fun, also a 12-page activity book provides ideas and drawings to help ignite your child’s imagination.
Plus two mini play packs are including allowing loads of dot-to-dot activities. This product is safe for children made from non-toxic food-grade materials that offer quiet, clean, hands-n fun that is engaging for any occasion.
3. Melissa & Doug Triangle Crayons
These amazing jumbo triangular crayons are great arts and crafts for 3 year olds. They are non-roll crayons that are durable, something handy for younger children who can be rough sometimes.
In 10 bright inviting colors for lots of creative fun, made easier with the triangular design which makes the pencils easier to grasp a hold of promoting writing skills for in their later years.
The Jumbo crayons are made from break-resistant-plastic and come in a convenient flip-open case, the perfect stocking filler gift at Christmas or birthdays.
4. ZMLM Scratch Paper For Kids
If you’re seeking thanksgiving crafts for 3 year olds why not consider this awesome scratch paper that will allow your little ones to create rainbow masterpieces simply. Inside the kit, you’ll find 50 pieces of paper, 20 wooden styluses, 16 scratch ornaments, ribbons, stencils, and a soft brush too.
Made from completely safe and non toxic materials, this is without a doubt one of the best simple art projects for children allowing plenty of creativity. Children will get to grips with the activity very quickly, which involves using the tool the scratch away the black film on the paper to reveal the pretty colors underneath.
What sort of design will your child work on? There is so much imaginative fun to be had here with all the different options!
5. Creativity For Kids Fun Felt Shapes
Fuzzy felt shapes bring about so much fun and this exciting felt board set designed especially for toddlers is a fantastic art for 3 year olds activity. Using the layers of felt, children can create their own characters for a storyboard and tell stories about the characters too.
With no mess whatsoever and this being a great travel option, there is so much fun to be had anywhere. There are over 100 pieces included in the set that includes a storage bag too for mess-free playtime.
A great opportunity for little ones to learn about colors, shapes, patterns, and size relationships, this toy is great for preschoolers and is an all-round great arts craft idea.
6. Melissa And Doug Double-Sided Tabletop
For 3 year old activities, this tabletop that’s double-sided by Melissa & Doug is a great choice. Helping children to creatively play, the easel stands sturdy and comes with two different art activities.
On one side, there is a chalkboard and the other features a magnetic dry-erase board as well as 42 accessories including markets, letters, numbers, and more. An ideal gift for toddlers, ar for 3 year olds have never looked so educational.
The beauty of this amazing toy is that it both promotes imaginative thinking and enhances learning at the same time. Parents won’t have to worry about mess either, thanks to a built-in paper roll for easy cleaning!
7. My First Paint With Water
My first paint with water from Melissa and Doug is the perfect introduction to painting for your little ones. There are 24 painting pages, each with a different animal your kids will love like a horse, cat, elephant, dolphin, bear, dog, and a hippo.
Simply wet the brush and paint the page, watching the colors magically combine, creating amazing pieces of art your children will be proud of. Each page has an easy to tear, perforated page making displaying these masterpieces around your home easier than ever.
The paint with water book teaches color recognition and develops hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills making it fun and educational.
8. Kids Ultimate Scratch Board
Scratching to reveal images can be so much fun for anybody, and with this cool Creative Kids set, your toddler will be able to unleash their creativity easily.
Helping to sharpen fine motor skills, boost imagination, and enhance color learning, this set is beneficial in so many ways as a crafts for 3 year old boy toy.
Included are 20 scratch sheets, 2 stencils, 2 styluses, 4 frames, and easy to follow instructions too for zero confusion. Children will love the mesmerizing images that are revealed with a little bit of scratching!
9. Tara Disney Princess Necklace Activity Set
The Tara Disney princess activity set is simple, just slide the beads through the silicone necklace along with the character charms. Mix and match these amazing colorful beads creating new looks and designs.
All the accessories that come with this gift pack away neatly inside the plastic carry case, which has a handle for fun on the move. This crafts set is designed for children aged 3 and above. Toddlers will absolutely love making and designing their own art to wear whether for themselves or friends.
This is also a fantastic birthday activity ideas as one of the cute craft ideas we’ve picked out to keep your toddler entertained.
10. TINOTEEN Button Art Toy
TINOTEEN’s Button art toy activity set lets you discover a whole new world of creativity, including 18 different patterns and 50 vibrant buttons.
Recommended for children 3 and above due to the small pieces that are included. The set contains a storage tray making it easier for the organization when playtime is over. Made with strong durable materials that are reinforced making them less susceptible to any damages.
Your toddler will be safe using these high-quality materials, all BPA free. An amazing gift for both boys and girls all your round, ideal for birthdays and Christmas.
11. My First Crayola Jumbo Paintbrushes
The My First Crayola Jumbo Paintbrushes are great for toddlers made especially for their small hands providing children with their first art supplies, giving them a head start in a creative sense.
The paintbrushes have chunky, jumbo handles making creating for your little ones easier than ever, having a large area to hold while painting.
A unique brush tip has been designed for each brush, providing a range of colorful outputs. Your child will love getting used to the creative world painting with the specifically designed developmental paintbrushes.
12. Skoolzy STEM Toy Building Blocks
While building blocks may not be at the top of your list of arts for 3 year olds, this STEM kit is sure to promote creativity and learning at the same time. The educational toy encourages fine motor skill building and is a great beginner science toy for little preschoolers.
Offering endless possibilities, children will love constructing colorful sculptures and towers any time they want to. The connecting blocks can be easily put together allowing children to sort the different colors easily and learn as they go.
Parents won’t have to worry about storage either as the blocks come with a bag included too. What magical creation will your child make? From vehicles to towers, there’s so much choice!
13. Crayola Color Wonder Set
This Crayola Color Wonder set encourages plenty of color fun with an ocean-themed or jungle coloring set. Included in the set are 1 stamp pad, 4 stamps, a stamp holder, a 24-page blank book, 3 sticker sheets, and 5 color wonder markers.
Toddlers can create their own wonderful scenes that encourage creative storytelling at the same time. A great solution to messy coloring, parents can allow their 3 year old to enjoy the activity without worrying about ink stains.
If you’re searching for art for 3 year olds that can be taken on travels such as car rides and flights, this is another great option. If you’re seeking a set that inlcludes plenty of variation, look no further!
14. Crayola Color Wonder Magic Light Brush
The Crayola Color Mess Free Magic Brush Paint Set has 6 Color Wonder paints, 1 Magic Light Brush unit, and 18 blank Color Wonder paper sheets. simply dip the magic brush into the clear paint and watch as it lights up to show the color that it is.
No chance of messy stains on clothes or furniture as these Color wonder products like all available, are mess-free having no need to worry about your kitchen table or living room sofa. One of the best thanksgiving crafts for 3 year olds or even great for Christmas and birthdays.
15. Merry Mermaid Magnet Dress-Up
Craft ideas for 3 year olds don’t always have to be pencils, pens, and coloring books. The dress-up mermaid is brilliant and offers lots of creative fun. Merry Mermaid from Melissa and Doug is a wooden mermaid that has magnetic strips to clothe her with lots of different fashion items and accessories.
This set contains 1 wooden doll with a stand, plus 33 magnetic clothes and accessories, which can be sorted into the matching outfits, or combined together creating new styles. The box itself acts as a study storage space that adults will love, making tidy up time quick and easy.
Merry Mermaid can also promote your child’s imaginative skills helping to strengthen social skills as little ones interact with the chracter too.
16. Playfoam The Everlasting Squish
The everlasting squish brought to kids by PlayFoam is an awesome way for preschoolers to express their creativity as one of the most inexpensive art projects for 3 year olds.
Children can shape the foam however they wish to and squash it back into its original form to begin again. There are over 30 different things that kids can do with this toy included in the fun guidebook.
Completely safe and non-toxic, parents can have complete peace of mind while their children are playing. This makes a great little stocking filler gift for any child over the age of 3 and includes lots of fun colors to learn about.
17. Melissa And Doug Magicolor
Melissa and Doug products are the leading in child growth in those early impressionable years. The Magicolor activity book has 18 coloring pages and 4 mess-free markers making this gif the perfect one for your child. The markers that are included will only appear on Magicolor paper, providing mess-free fun on clothes, skin, or tabletops.
Simply put pen to paper and the vibrant colors will appear. Friendly, fun themes are designed on the pages with butterflies, kittens, fairies, unicorns, and more. A great crafts set for on the go with the specially designed spiral-bound format, the perfect gift for birthdays and Christmas.
18. Crayola Washimals
If you’re looking for unique art activities for 3 year olds, consider this lovely Crayola washimals set which includes 4 washable animal figures. Children will love playing with the adorable friends and included is 1 scrub tub, a scrub brush, 6 markers, and an easy to follow instruction manual too.
Kids can totally customize their animals using any colors and designs they wish then get busy washing them to begin again. Suitable for children ages 3 years and above, we love this Crayola set as one of the most cool 3 year old activities out there.
The non-toxic markers included are yellow, orange, green, blue, purple, and pink which all wash from the skin easily.
19. Crayola Scented Light-Up Stamper
Crayola has produced the mess-free scented light-up stamper set, featuring a color wonder stamper, 10 zoos themed stampers, 3 mini scented markers, and 12 pages of blank color wonder paper.
The color ink is amazing as it only works on the special color wonder paper, never anywhere else providing mess-free fun. The perfect art activities for 3 year olds whether that’s in the home or on the go.
Safe and non-toxic this set makes a great gift for your toddler, and pair with the classic color wonder markers for more creative clean fun.
20. Crayola Mess-Free Touch-Lights
When it comes to fun crafts to do, the mess can be a huge worry for lots of parents. With the mess-free touch lights doodle board, children can get creative with 12 different light colors while singing along to 6 cheerful songs.
The portable doodle board is great for traveling and is sure to keep toddlers entertained as they doodle and boogie along. The sealed gel surface is completely safe for doodling with little fingers and provides hours of entertainment. You’ll need 3 AA batteries to power up this awesome toy to get started with the simple art project.
We’ve come to the end of our awesome list of crafts for toddlers age 3 ideas and as you can see there are lots to choose from! Whether you’re working with a large budget or a small budget, are buying for a birthday, or simply want to treat your child, we’ve got some further inspiration below for you with our best buy and budget pick.
Our best buyis this wonderful Melissa & Doug double-sided table top activity board. On one side children can get busy drawing with markers and playing with the magnetic shapes and letters, while the other side offers a traditional chalkboard.
Preschool arts and craft has never looked better, with the added bonus of easy cleaning thanks to a built-in roll of paper roll too. Children will love getting busy with this board that promotes imagination and lots of learning at the same time!
Best Budget Pick
Working with a small budget? Not to worry! This awesome set of PlayFoam everlasting squish is sure to keep your little one entertained as a cheap arts craft idea.
The colorful balls of foam can be squished and molded into lots of fun imaginative shapes, or follow the ideas that come in the manual for learning. Safe, non-toxic, and easy to get to grips with, this toy offers excellent value for money and is sure to boost your child’s creativity at the same time.
Best Christmas Crafts for 3 Year Olds?
There are so many wonderful Christmas craft ideas for toddlers to take advantage of, and while there is no ‘best’, there are certainly some ideas that can be found at the top.
Many parents enjoy participating in crafts with their children as the festivity approaches, but thinking of fun arts and crafts for kids can be a challenge! Not only do you have to consider their attention span, learning level, and personal preferences but a lot of the time, budget comes into play too.
For cheap crafts for toddlers age 3 to 4, consider buying some colored cards and sticky shapes to make your own Xmas cards to send out to friends and family. There are some toddler-friendly scissor options out there that can be great for promoting hand and eye coordination too.
In fact, any cutting and sticking activity is sure to enhance important skills including fine motor too. From the list above, parents could choose to buy their child the Crayola My First paintbrushes which can be used to create a nativity scene for example.
There is a great deal of satisfaction a child will gain from finishing an art project, and it needn’t be too fancy either. A simple crafts set up usually does the trick and provides children with the opportunity to learn and create at the same time!
Consider buying some basic art materials inclusive of crayons, markers, paints, brushes, and paper for craft activities whenever you want them.