I took my 6 year old to Michael's craft store today. He likes doing arts and crafts (my 4 year old only recently stopped saying "arts and craps").
I had no idea what to buy. So many of the kids crafts are geared for girls. My boys have no interest in making a tiara or magic wand. Now if that magic wand became a sword, we might have something.
The main problem is that I want something that my kids can do themselves. I don't like those projects that say for kids age 3-5 and then when I open the box, my child can't do it. A tantrum follows and I spend hours trying to glue eyes the size of fleas onto a peanut shell but they inevitably stick to my thumb instead and I can't get it off without ripping my skin.
So here's what I think the craft kit makers should do. They should implement a new rating system, similar to the movie rating system. So each kit will have to be rated by an independent authority of some sort. (And no, I'm not volunteering for this job. I have had enough of flea eyeballs and yarn hair!) So printed on the outside of each box should have an accurate age level that can complete the project.
It should also state the length of time it will take a child to complete the task. For instance, I would be willing to spend more money on a kit that keeps my kids busy for 2 hours instead of a kit that only lasts 15 minutes and ends with crying because tab A is three times larger than slot B which its supposed to easily slide into.
Wouldn't it be great to see craft kits on the shelves that said, "Rated G for kids ages 3-5, 45 minutes of activity guaranteed"?! And next to it would be a huge pile (because no one would buy it) of boxes labeled, "Rated PhD for IQ's 150 and up. Requires a microscope and patience of a saint to complete within one lifetime."