7 craft ideas to keep your kids safe from Hungry Ghost Festival smoke and spirits

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Keep your little munchkins happy during the Hungry Ghost Festival with these seven fun craft ideas you can do together, all in the comfort of your home -- away from smoke and spirits!

The Hungry Ghost Festival is here again and your kid might have been told not to go out after dark and to avoid going swimming so as not to cross paths with any wandering spirits.

For those who don’t observe this annual affair, some of you may also prefer to stay put at home away from the all the incense smoke outside.

So if your little one is feeling a little bored from being cooped up indoors, here are seven fun crafts to keep him happy during this seventh month of the Lunar Calendar!

Hungry Ghost Festival, puppet theatre, fun, play, game, activity, toy, doll

Stage your very own Hungry Ghost Festival getai show at home with this adorable puppet theatre

1. DIY puppet theatre

During the Hungry Ghost Festival you may notice a getai (song stage) set up around certain neighbourhoods.

This is where elaborate traditional opera, upbeat song and dance numbers, amusing stand-up comedy, and even fun puppet shows will be performed for people and spirits alike.

So why not build a mini puppet theatre and let your kids stage their own puppet show to entertain mum, dad and the family pet at home?

You will need

  • Large cardboard box
  • Paint
  • Fabric scraps
  • Ribbons or string
  • Scissors
  • Penknife
  • Craft glue
  • Paintbrush

What to do

1. Cut out a window on one side of the cardboard box

2. Let your kids paint and decorate the box however they like

3. Glue on the fabric scraps to the top on the inside of the window as mini curtains and tie them with ribbons/ string to keep them open

4. Your children can now use puppets or plush toys and go inside the box to perform their very own puppet theatre show!

Hungry Ghost Festival, butterfly, moth, art, craft, fun, play, paper

Don’t kill that little moth in your house — it might just be a visiting ancestor!

2. Folded paper moths

If you see any creepy crawlies during this period, put down the fly swatter and step away from that can of insect repellant because it just might be someone’s dearly departed great grandfather who has fluttered by for a short visit!

“Rare” insects such as grasshoppers, butterflies and moths are believed to be ancestors who have come back to check in on their family.

Pay tribute to these gentle creatures by crafting up some lovely paper moths with your munchkins.

What you will need

  • Coloured paper (cut into squares)
  • Ribbon
  • String
  • Colourful pipe cleaners
  • Googly eyes (optional)

What to do

1. Choose two square papers of different colours

2. Fold each piece of paper “concertina” (like an accordian)

3. Hold the two folded papers together and use a small piece of ribbon or string to tie in the middle

4. Wrap a coloured pipe cleaner around the middle into the moth’s fuzzy antennae

5. Stick on the googly eyes

6. Decorate your home with these adorable DIY moths!

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Use oranges as stamps to create beautiful print art

3. Lucky orange prints

You probably have noticed by now that oranges are rather important fruits in the Chinese culture.

This delicious citrus is seen as a symbol of good luck and wealth, and is used as part of the offerings during the Hungry Ghost Festival.

Spruce up your home with an orange printed tablecloth made with love by your child!

What you will need

  • Mandarin oranges or tangerines
  • Paints
  • Mah jong paper or plain tablecloth
  • Small bowls
  • Knife
  • Clear plastic sheet (same size as your table top)

What to do

1. Put different coloured paints in separate bowls (or paper plates)

2. Cut the oranges in half

3. Spread out a large sheet of mah jong paper or plain table cloth on the floor

4. Let your kids dip the oranges into some paint and press it onto the paper to create pretty print images

5. Once the paper/ cloth has been filled up and the paint has dried, cover it with a clear plastic sheet on a table to be admired during your family’s meal time!

Go to the next page for some more Hungry Ghost Festival themed craft ideas!

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