.Let’s make some fun rat and mouse crafts to celebrate 2020, the Year of the Rat, according to the Chinese New Year calendar. The rat is the first animal in the Chinese zodiac, which runs on a 12-year cycle. The rat is known for its wit and cleverness, and we think these crafts are pretty clever too!
Some of these crafts are mice instead of rats, but as you may have guessed, any mouse craft is easily adaptable to turn it into a rat. You usually just need to make it a little larger!
We’ve found lots of fun and easy rat and mouse crafts for you to try, from paper rats to cupcake liners to origami projects. Many of these can be completed in just a few minutes, so they’re perfect for the classroom if you’re learning about Chinese culture during this time.
Fun Year of the Rat Crafts for Chinese New Year
1. Paper Rat Craft from Kids Craft Room: These printable paper rats are incredibly easy to make, and you could try all sorts of fun color combinations. We love that they’re folded to stand up on their own.
2. Easy Lunar New Year Rat Paper Cutting Craft from Pink Stripey Socks: Paper cutting crafts like this one are great for helping kids practice their scissor skills. Older elementary-aged children will be able to complete this independently. Younger children may need a rat template and help with the folding as well as advice on where to place the cuts. Decorate your home or classroom with them when you’re done!
3. Origami Mice from Red Ted Art: These origami mice are absolutely adorable! The video tutorial shows you how to make them step-by-step. This is an intermediate-level origami craft, so it’s perfect for older kids who’ve been doing origami for a while.
4. Painted Mouse Rocks from Fireflies and Mud Pies: Kids who like painting and hunting for rocks will enjoy this craft. Use gray or brown paint to create rocks that look like mice (or rats). Then, hide them in fun locations in your community for Chinese New Year!
5. Cupcake Liner Mouse from I Heart Crafty Things: This is a cute little craft for toddlers and preschoolers to get in on the fun. If you don’t have cupcake liners, you could use a painted coffee filter to make a larger version.
6. Mouse Headband from The Educator’s Spin On It: Based on The Gruffalo, this mouse headband is a great way for children to step into a favorite storybook character. It’s made of felt, so it’s a budget-friendly craft, and the material is easy to work with. That also means it should be quite comfortable for your little one to wear.
7. Paper Heart Mice from Our Kid Things: Although they were made for Valentine’s Day, we think these bright, colorful paper heart mice are perfect for Chinese New Year. This would be an easy craft for the classroom, too.
More Cute Rat and Mouse Craft Ideas for Kids
8. M is for Mouse Handprint Craft from Crystal & Co.: Make a handprint keepsake for the occasion. It’s super easy to create a mouse from a handprint by simply adding some ears and drawing in the face.
9. 3D Paper Mouse from The Craft Train: Simple shapes like hearts and an oval are used to make a fun mouse with a 3D head. He looks as though he’s going to leap off the page!
10. Easy Mouse Craft for the Letter M from Must Have Mom: This adorable little guy is made from craft foam. The template makes it easy to cut out the mouse shape. From there, you can customize the ears, eyes, and mouth. Love the little block of cheese he has with him!
11. Cyril and Pat Craft from Crafts on Sea: Cyril and Pat is a sweet story about a squirrel who befriends a “different” squirrel, who turns out to be a rat. Not only is this a fun craft for Chinese New Year, it offers a valuable lesson in that it’s okay to be friends with people who are different from us.
12. Felt Mice from Sugar, Spice, and Glitter: Use this idea to create a mouse finger puppet or the flat mice that you see in the picture. Either way, they’re totally cute!
13. Acorn Mice from Kids Craft Room: If you gathered any acorns during the fall, use some to create an acorn mice family. Don’t the acorn caps make the most adorably big ears?
14. Wooden Spoon Mouse from I Heart Crafty Things: Use a wooden spoon to make a fun puppet to play with. You could even paint the spoon gray or brown to make it look more rat-like.
15. Mouse Corner Bookmark from Red Ted Art: Keep track of your pages with a mouse corner bookmark. This is a basic origami bookmark with embellishments, so it is perfect for origami beginners.