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The Week Junior is an award-winning current affairs magazine loved by children aged 8-14. Every issue features a 'How To' section filled with fun crafts, recipes, games and more. We’ve compiled some of the best experiments and exciting activities from our previous issues that you can do at home, to help keep your curious young minds exploring, learning and creating. We’d love to see your creations – please email your pictures to hello@theweekjunior.co.uk and you might feature in our magazine!

         

Make a rainbow picture holder

rainbow holder

This project is a great way of displaying notes, reminders and photos in a way that really stands out. It makes a thoughtful present and will brighten and tidy up your desk.

Make rainbow bookends

rainbow bookends

If you’re a keen reader, why not design a pair of bookends to keep your reading shelf organised?

Make a Haring sport scene

olaf and art

“Keith Haring is a street artist who started out making comics and cartoons. The work is easily recognisable, with its simple, brightly coloured outline characters and symbols. They have an energetic feel too, thanks to the movement lines he puts around his people and animals.

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Get ready for school

Improve your homework

girl doing homework

How to get organised with homework and succeed at even the trickiest of tasks. 

C: Shutterstock

 

Get ready for school

school uniform and bag

Starting a new term, new academic year or especially a new school can be stressful. There is a way to remove a lot of this stress and it all comes down to how well you have packed your bag. 

C: Shutterstock

 

Make “reading-fuel” snacks

flapjacks

Reading is a great way to escape to a world of adventure, learn something new or have a good laugh. You’ll need fuel for a big reading session, though, and here are some delicious snacks to boost your energy levels.

C: Shutterstock

 

Be a taste detective

chocolate

Sally Brown and Kate Morris, from the Guild of Food Writers, have put together a taste experiment that will tantalise your senses and make you think more about the food you eat. The way we experience food is an important part of enjoying what is on our plates. 

C: Shutterstock

 

Make a hedgehog pen holder

hedgehog pen holder

Keep your pens and pencils tidy in this colourful hedgehog.

Make a Yayoi Kusama dottopus

olaf and octopus

The artist I am looking at here, Yayoi Kusama, completely ignores my third rule because she is absolutely dotty about dots. She is a Japanese artist who uses polka dots in pretty much all of her work. Dotty tentacles are a theme in Kusama’s work and they’ve inspired me to make my own octopus picture.

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Autumn crafts

Make a woodland guardian

woodland art

“As there are lots of fallen leaves about, I thought it would be fun to use Andy Goldsworthy’s leaf-art techniques to make our own woodland guardian character.”

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Make a spooky shadow bottle

spooky bottle

As the nights draw in, why not create a shadow bottle to light up the room with a spooky scene? Using an old bottle and some battery powered fairy lights you can put this together quite quickly – and there’s nothing to stop you from making up the design using any image you like if you’d rather not do a spooky one.

Create mix-and-match monsters

Olaf and monster art

“I thought it would be funny to make my own Leonora Carrington-inspired mix-and-match monster-maker. With this one, the more you draw, the more combinations you’ll be able to make. Get inspired by looking at actual animals, and fantasy creatures such as dragons and demons.”

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Make tie-dye decorations

tie dye

These tie-dye patterned decorations will brighten up dull winter days. They look great hung in a window or anywhere in your house that needs a splash of colour.

C: Charlotte Stowell

 

Be a superstar illustrator

Olaf illustrating

“I love illustrating because it is so varied. Here are my top eight tips for being a superstar illustrator. And remember – if you have fun with your drawing, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a superstar illustrator!”

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Structure a story

boy writing

How to structure a story.

Winter crafts

The joy of cooking

family cooking

Cooking and baking are both fun to do, and can make you feel good too. Here’s two simple recipes for you to try.

Make a 3D reindeer head

reindeer

Using recycled cardboard as the main material, you can make it as big as you like and get as festive as you feel by adding some fun finishing touches.

C: Tessa Pillars Powell

 

Make a pop-out pop art card

pop up card

As it’s coming up to Christmas, I thought I’d make an onomatopoeic pop-out pop art Christmas card – that’s a mouthful!

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Make a Basquiat scratchy cat

olaf and cat

Basquiat was an artist who rose to fame in the 1980s in New York, US. He started out as a graffiti artist and he would spray slogans and messages onto the sides of buildings. He moved on to painting on canvases and famous people such as pop star Madonna and artist Andy Warhol were big fans of his work.

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Keep a diary

boy writing in diary

Holly King-Mand is the nation’s favourite English teacher, having had thousands of young people join her online lessons during lockdown. Here she shares her top advice on how to write a diary

Make a surreal 3D game

olaf and game

Surreal means a bit weird, strange, unusual or unexpected and two of the best surrealist artists are Salvador Dalí and René Magritte. I thought it would be cool to make my own version of the classic snakes and ladders board game but give it a 3D twist. Also, to make it surreal, I’m swapping the snakes for worms and the ladders for gherkins.”

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Make paper daffodils

daffodils

The daffodil is the national flower of Wales. The flowers come in all sorts of shapes and shades, so why not make a mixed bunch of spring blooms to put in a vase and brighten your room.

Make a tasty spinach and ricotta lasagne

lasagne

Kate Morris and Sally Brown are food writers and members of the Guild of Food Writers. “This recipe could make you very popular at home because it just needs the oven, a baking dish and very few utensils, so there won’t be lots of washing-up at the end,” says Morris. 

 

Boost your vocabulary

writing

How to extend your vocabulary and use an interesting range of words in your speaking and writing.

C: Shutterstock

 

Craft your own beads

beads

Create a colourful necklace or bracelet for a birthday or as a friendship gift, by rolling paper into beads. It takes a bit of patience but once you get going you won’t be able to stop. You can change the colour, pattern, shape and size of your beads, so get ready to experiment.

Create futurist fireworks art

firework art

With Bonfire Night on 5 November, I’m going to show you how you can take inspiration from Futurism to make your own abstract fireworks art.

C: Olaf Falafel

Make a paper-cut tiger

paper tiger

Paper cutting originated in China but can be seen around the world in different styles. Decorations made with intricate patterns are traditional for Chinese New Year. Have a go at making your own cut-out design to celebrate the year of the tiger.

C: Charlotte Stowell

 

Make perfect pancakes

pancake

Wherever you are, it’s the perfect excuse to make – and eat – the perfect pancake. Now for the big decision: will you eat yours with lemon and sugar, chocolate spread, or something else?

C: Shutterstock

 

Make welsh cakes

welsh cakes

On 1 March it is St David’s Day – the patron saint of Wales. To mark the day, try something nicer than just leeks and water: traditional Welsh cakes.

C: Shutterstock

 

How to write an awesome ending

girl thinking

Ending a story can be a lot harder than starting one. Great writing isn’t just about well-written sentences, it is also how a story is put together – what’s known as structure.

C: Getty

Draw a portrait a day

self portrait

Draw a single-line self-portrait every day. A self-portrait is when you draw a picture of yourself. The aim of the challenge is to try and make each picture unique. So get your pens ready and take a line for a walk!

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Bring your characters to life

girl drawing

How do you create imaginative and intriguing characters in your writing? The trick is to describe and develop them so that your characters take centre stage and really bring your fabulous stories to life.

C: Shutterstock

 

Declutter your space

girls decluttering

Reuse, reduce and recycle – who knew that tidying up could actually be good for the planet? Follow these simple steps to make decluttering your space easier, and learn some skills to keep clutter under control, forever.

Christmas

Create a pantomime

kid with paper and pen

Christmas is almost here and with it comes panto season. Pantomimes are staged performances of well-known tales that use audience interaction to make the show fun and entertaining for all.

C: Getty

 

Craft Christmas houses

paper houses

Create these simple charming houses out of things laying around the house.

C: Charlotte Stowell

Make your own wrapping paper

wrapping paper

Make some festive wrapping paper in the style of William Morris. He was a British designer who lived more than 100 years ago, and he’s famous for his beautifully patterned fabric, furniture and wallpaper. 

C: Olaf Falafel

 

Be smart with your money

boy with wallet

Money may not buy happiness, but it helps. It pays for the things we need to live and can make us feel secure. The Week Junior asked Dr Mara Harvey, money expert and author of the children’s book A Smart Way to Start, to share her top tips.

C: Shutterstock

 

Create cute bunny baubles

rabbit decorations

Join in with the Chinese New Year celebrations by turning a room into a “hoppy” place with these fun baubles.

C: Charlotte Stowell

 

Make a memory tree

memory tree

This clever memory tree is made from 12 twigs, leaf-shaped labels and a cardboard tube for the trunk. As each month passes, attach mementos such as a birthday card, a cinema or train ticket, etc. By the end of the year, you will have a tree decorated in memories of the moments that made you smile.

C: Charlotte Stowell

 

Halloween fun

Make a Halloween wreath

halloween wreath

If you are planning a party, or you want to let trick-or-treaters know you’re celebrating Halloween, hang a homemade wreath on your door or in a window.

Do Halloween face painting

girl with pumpkin face paint

Halloween is the perfect time to try out some face painting. Some designs can be complicated or a bit too creepy but here are six simple steps that will transform your face into the perfect pumpkin.

Make Halloween party treats

code

Be a code breaker, make some spooky bananas and ghostly lollipops.

Make fruity ice lollies

fruit lollies

These fun, fruity ice lollies are a refreshing way to stay cool in the heat. Super simple to make, they’re healthier than many of the sugary ice pops found in shops. 

C: Anna Mulvern

 

Polish your shoes

shoes

Learning how to polish your shoes is a handy skill that will keep them looking smart and make them last longer by keeping them waterproof. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll find it doesn’t take much time at all. 

C: Getty

 

Stay safe when it gets dark

boy in high vis vest

According to research, young people are more likely to have accidents near roads on the way to and from school during the winter months than at any other time, so it’s really important to stay safe and be seen while you’re out and about. 

C: Getty

 

Write a blog

boy at laptop

“Writing a blog is a great way to experiment with your writing style and get your ideas out there for the world to read. Many successful authors started their careers as bloggers and there’s no reason why you can’t follow in their footsteps in the future.” – Holly King-Mand

C: Getty

 

Bake shortbread biscuits

shortbread

These classic biscuits are delicious and easy to make. They are buttery, sweet and very satisfying. 

C: Getty

 

Make summer lanterns

summer lantern

These homemade lanterns will give your garden, balcony or bedroom a cosy and colourful glow. 

C: Charlotte Stowell

 

Make Jubilee bunting

bunting

Bunting is popular for street parties and events, and Jubilee celebrations will be no exception. Create this cool-multicoloured version with sections based on the UK flag. You can draw your own designs on the flags or use this collage technique to make it even more special.

Bake Mary Berry’s scones

scones

If you’re going to a street party, scones are a great treat to take along to share. This recipe is by star baker Mary Berry, former Great British Bake Off judge.

Create a Pop Art collage

pop art

The English painter and collage artist, Richard Hamilton was a pop artist. He cut images from magazines, newspapers and packaging and arranged them in interesting ways.

Make cornflake florentines

cornflake baking

Three generations of my family have made chocolate cornflake cakes for birthday parties, but this recipe takes the idea to a new level,” says Sam Gates, a cookery teacher, author and a member of the Guild of Food Writers.

C: Sam Gates

Sound super smart

girl with arms up smiling

Holly King-Mand is the nation’s favourite English teacher – thousands of young people joined her free online lessons during lockdown. Reading, etymology (the history of words) and Shakespeare are some of her favourite things. If you want to sound super smart, she has shared some top tips with you here. You can find even more advice at hollysclassroom.com

Be a beatboxer

kids beat boxing

Beatboxing is a musical art that involves people using their mouth, lips, tongue and voice to create percussion sounds, instead of using drums or cymbals, for example. Award-winning comedian Jarred Christmas and world champion beatboxer Hobbit are touring the UK with their show, The Mighty Kids Beatbox Comedy Show. Here, they share four steps to being a brilliant beatboxer.

© mightykidsbeatboxcomedy.com

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Stand with Ukraine

Make a peace poster

make a peace poster

Your child can draw a picture or write a message to express how they feel. Then, stick it in your window so other people can see it too.

Write to your MP

write a letter

Members of Parliament (MPs) represent everyone living in their area. If you'd like the UK government to do more to help the people of Ukraine, make sure your MP knows about it by writing them a letter.

Activities for the whole family to try

Be an energy hero

Be an energy hero

Take control of your energy bills with this hack-packed article with ways to help the environment and cut costs.

Make delicious energy bars

Energy bars

Packed with healthy ingredients and easy to make, these bars provide a brilliant breakfast or lunch box treat.

Create a pet portrait

Create a pet portrait

 Paint your pet’s portrait using a unique technique called pointillism, which involves making lots of patterns using dots.

Make a desk tidy

Cactus

Get creative crafting this cute cactus stationery holder. Give it to a friend or give it pride of place on your own desk.

Excel at spelling

Spelling

 Discover the secrets to spelling success with this helpful guide.

Make pebble holders

Pebbles

Use these fun painted pebble holders to display pictures, messages and reminders.

Challenge yourself to save water

Save water

Discover interesting facts about water usage and make changes to reduce the amount of water you use at home.

Pick your next book

Pick a book

Discover how to find a book that’s perfect for you from talking to the experts to diving into a new style of story.

Create Banksy-style art

Banksy art

Olaf Falafel, the comedian, dad, author and illustrator, shares his tips for making Banksy-inspired art. He’s even created a handy stencil!

Make a smoothie bowl

Smoothie bowl

 Healthy, delicious and fun to make, these simple smoothie dishes are the perfect way to start your day.

Make unique bookmarks

Bookmarks

Have a go at creating animal-themed origami bookmark corners.

Create Tingatinga art

Make vibrant art in this distinctive East African style.

Make vibrant art in this distinctive East African style.

Make a delicious soup

Soup

This Moroccan bean soup recipe is the perfect winter treat.

Write a letter in Braille

Braille

Have a go at creating Braille messages using lentils.

Find an amazing book to read

Girl reading

Check out our reading list – it’s bursting with bookish delights.

Make a lucky waving cat

Waving cat

Have fun celebrating Chinese New Year by creating your very own Maneki Neko cat.

Matchstick Men Masterpiece

Matchstick Men craft

British artist L.S Lowry painted people-filled scenes around Manchester, England. Join Olaf Falafel as he helps you create your very own Lowry with his nifty printing trick.

Weave a colourful turtle

Woven Turtles

We guarantee you'll have lots of fun creating mesmerising patterns using a method of weaving popular in Mexico.

Homemade bowls

Fruit Bowls

Craft a colourful fruit bowl and see how many different designs can you come up with.

Get cooking

Sweet Potato

Our sweet potato and spinach cakes are delicious and simple enough for the whole family to enjoy cooking together.

Shoebox art

Jackson Pollock Art

Be sure to save your shoeboxes and you'll soon be making masterpieces like the famous abstract artist Jackson Pollock.

Create your own rainbow cover

rainbow

Download The Week Junior's cover, print it out and decorate it however you like.

Make cardboard animals

animals

Use leftover cardboard to decorate your desk at home.

Cheesy clouds

cheese

Try this easy-to-make cheesy recipe- the perfect side-dish to any meal.

Create your own marble game

Marble

This fantastically fun game will have you hanging off the edge of your seat.

Easy tasty noodles

noodles

Make this flavoursome dish for your family and friends. All it requires is fresh vegetables, noodles and a splash of water. Spice it up with chilli or add an egg to make it even better.

Veggie couscous

cous

Couscous couldn't be easier to make, and adding a few tasty fruit and vegetables makes it way more exciting.

spacing

Make a den

den

Have fun making a den inside. We've got some top tips to help you make your den as cosy and cool as possible.

Make story dice

dice

You'll never struggle to think up a story with one of these easy-to-make story dice. Throw and off you go on a magical imaginary adventure...

Create a collage self-portrait

collage

Now's your time to make a self-portrait with pictures and words that sum you up. This is about reflecting your personality, rather than what you look like.

Make no-cook pesto

pesto

Have a go at making fresh, tasty pesto. Find out what ingredients actually go into your favourite pasta sauce.

Cook easy scrambled eggs

egg

Make delicious scrambled eggs in seconds. All it takes is whisking the eggs in a bowl and popping them into the microwave.

Dreamy hot chocolate

hit chocolate

Warm up when you're feeling chilly with dreamy hot chocolate. There's a secret ingredient in this exciting recipe from Enid Blyton: Jolly Good Food.

Start circuit training

circuit

Perfect your fitness routine with some circuit training. Use this guide to find out why stretching is key to exercise and much more.

Become a spy

spy

It's time to dress up in disguise, dust for fingerprints and create coded messages. Here's your guide to becoming a top detective.

Draw an acromantula

spider

Try your hand at drawing the giant spider from Harry Potter with step-by-step instructions from legendary illustrator Levi Pinfold.

Build bottle skittles

bottles

See who can get the first single strike with this easy-to-create game.

Tomato garlic toast

Tomato

Chop tomatoes and garlic, toast bread and drizzle with a little olive oil to make this super simple snack for a delicious taste of summer.

Make a harmonica

harmonica

Build yourself a brilliant harmonica with a few everyday objects, and start playing some of your favourite tunes.

The Week Junior Podcast

pod

The Week Junior Show takes you behind the scenes of the features from your magazine. Each week, Bex from Fun Kids is joined by members of The Week Junior team to discuss a range of topics, including: 

  • Their favourite stories
  • The week's hot topics
  • Whether the 'Real or Rubbish?' report is fake news or the real deal.

It's completely free to listen and all of our previous episodes are available for hours of entertainment.

       

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Tasty dhal

dhal

Try your hand at cooking this traditional Indian lentil-based dish. Add coriander and lime to jazz it up and serve to hungry family members. We promise they'll enjoy it.

Make a fancy fried egg

egg

If you want to make a delicious cheese, tomato and basil fried egg, go to The Week Junior's How to page.

Greek-style salad

salad

Tuck into a tasty Greek-style salad and you'll be transported to feta-tastic dreamland.

Soda Bread

bread

Soda bread is the perfect addition to any meal. Enjoy with boiled eggs for breakfast or dip it in your soup at tea.

Draw Harry Potter's Patronus

satg

Learn how to draw Harry Potter's Patronus with step-by-step instructions from Harry Potter illustrator Levi Pinfold.

Create a magical world

egg

Children's Laureate Cressida Cowell has some handy tips on how you can create your own magical world.

Learn how to tell a story

egg

Discover how to wow your friends with amazing tales with our how to tell a story guide.

Indoor workout

indoor workout

Stay active in your home with this simple and fun circuit.

Indoor workout 2

isolation

Another simple workout for you to do indoors, get all the family involved!

Write letters to care homes

carehomes

Help lift the spirits of people in care homes at a time when they cannot have visitors and may feel isolated.  

Donate to food banks

food bank

Food banks give food and other household goods to people who are finding it hard to buy enough for themselves.

Home workout

Home workout

Another fun workout for you to do at home including crab walks and skaters.

Write an ode

ode writing

Choose a thing you love and get writing!

© Rex Shutterstock

Make a Lunar New Year dancing dragon

Lunar New Year dragon

To celebrate the Year of the Dragon, make this mini dancing figure with coloured card and wooden sticks.

Draw a wacky invention

Wacky invention

Outline your own invention in the style of illustrator William Heath Robinson.

© Olaf Falafel

Make lemon posset

Lemon posset

This zesty pudding is quick and easy to make but it’s a treat to eat.

© Rex Shutterstock

Make tasty egg muffins

Tasty egg muffins

If you thought muffins had to be sweet, think again. These savoury treats are perfect for a picnic – or a breakfast that you can make in advance.

© Getty Images

Make Welsh rarebit

Welsh rarebit

Celebrate St David’s Day with this delicious cheesy dish.

© Getty Images

Credits: Alamy, Rex Shutterstock, Sarah JohnsonOlaf FalafelCharlotte Stowell, Getty Images, Tessa Sillars-Powell

Know someone that loves science and nature?

Check out The Week Junior Science+Nature's FREE content hub and help them brinJSNg the world of science, technology, engineering and maths to life - even while they're at home! There are lots of exciting activities to ignite curiosities and mind-blowing ideas to keep children exploring.

  • Learn how to make a model lung
  • Join us on a mission into space and discover the secrets of the Sun
  • Turn an acorn into a mighty oak tree
  • Make a thermometer