Make a Summer Treasure Box

Kids love to pocket their treasures from hikes, trips to the beach, or just a lazy afternoon in the backyard. Any parent who has done a four-year-old’s laundry knows how much stuff gets collected over the course of a day. Of course to a child, these found objects are all unique and special, and children love to hold onto them as a way of building memories and discovering hands-on learning.

If your kids’ collections tend to increase in size over the summer with all the extra time spent exploring, this upcycled homemade treasure box helps keep that wonderful collection contained. Besides using the box as a summer art project itself, when you reuse materials (like the box and materials for the decorations) you’re practicing bal tashchit, the value of not wasting.

Another way to use the treasure box is for small puzzles, games, and toys for long car rides or unplanned activity time at home. You can even save yourself a tantrum or two and help keep shalom bayit (peace at home) by having each child create their own box. Then just rotate the toys each week to keep the excitement level up and help your kids build positive associations with sharing their prized items.

This Activity Works With These Books:


Container (shoebox, plastic container, or other recycled box)
Art supplies (markers, stickers, glitter, paint)
Treasures (feathers, stones, string, beads, or whatever small items you find over the summer)


Using your art supplies, decorate the box of your choice. Now keep your eyes open for treasures to put inside. You can keep the items in your box to look at, or make something from them when you have enough. You might create a collage to hang on your wall or a card to give to a special friend, and then you can begin collecting all over again.


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