I have a new, quick tutorial that is great for children. Like so many of the crafts we do, my sons taught me this one. They learned it at school. I'm not really sure what to call these but children see lots of possibility in them - they're just little treasures. I'm going to call them "jeweled shrink curls" for lack of a more inspiring term.
They're made from plastic bottles - all you need is a plastic bottle, scissors, permanent markers, foil, and a toaster oven.
Cut pieces out of the plastic bottle at random and give them to your children.
Have them scribble away and draw whatever they want on the plastic.
Then put the plastic pieces on a piece of foil and pop in a toaster oven. Watch them carefully. If the oven is preheated, they will start to curl up in about 30 seconds! Maybe even sooner - so keep an eye on them. Children love watching them transform.
Take them out and let them cool. Your children can play with them, string them like beads, or simply collect them like little jewels. I like this project because it is so fast and easy, yet really satisfying.