maker monday

Maker Monday: This easy DIY springtime project teaches growth mindset to little kids

Photos and project courtesy of April Hartmann/My Little Growing Mindset.

This Maker Monday craft for kids was shared with us last year by April Hartmann, founder of My Little Growing Mindset. Readers loved it, so we wanted to share it again now that sprintime is finally here again.

Hartmann teaches growth mindset qualities to kids, and this fun Maker Monday project does the very same thing. Kids will love creating their character’s face, planting the seeds, caring for the soil and then seeing the grass sprout. As the grass grows longer, their green-haired friend can get a trim for extra personality!

Growth mindset is an internal belief that intelligence and abilities can be improved through effort. Children with a growth mindset will enjoy learning and embrace challenges. They tend to think independently and bounce back from failure. The opposite is a fixed mindset, which is a belief that no effort will be enough to overcome the challenge.

Maker Monday materials you’ll need:

  • plain cups (paper, foam or plastic)
  • potting soil or plain dirt
  • grass seed
  • markers (permanent or washable)
  • scissors
  • optional: googly eyes, stickers, decorative tape, pom poms, yarn, etc. (Have fun!)

Before getting started ask your child a few questions:

  • Do you think it’s hard work to plant things and wait for them to grow?
  • How does it feel when you work hard and then something good happens?
  • How does it feel while you are waiting for the good thing to happen?

Explain that when something is hard to do, there is often a big reward if you don’t give up. Often that reward is a good feeling. We say that we feel “proud.”

Maker MondayMaker Monday instructions:

Step 1: Use markers to decorate your cup with a face. Permanent marker is best so it doesn’t smear when the plant is being watered. If using washable markers, you can cover the faces with a plastic bag to protect them when it’s time for a drink.

You can make different silly expressions or even a variety of emotions. Use additional craft supplies you have on hand to make it a one-of-a-kind.

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Step 2: Put some dirt in the cup, about 3/4 full. Potting soil works great, but a scoop of plain ol’ dirt from your yard will work, too.

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Step 3: Sprinkle a thin layer of grass seed on top of the soil.  Add another thin layer of soil on top, just enough to lightly cover the seeds. Use a spray bottle with water to lightly moisten the soil. Set in a sunny spot to watch them grow!

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Step 4: Continue to water your cup with the spray bottle daily, keeping the soil moist, but not wet. In just a few days you’ll see the grass start to sprout. A full head of green hair can be expected by day 7!

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Step 5: Time for a haircut! Kids love giving their characters a special style. Crewcut? Mohawk? You can even use some yarn to make ponytails. Your child can try new hairstyles every week, just keep watering and the grass will keep growing.

As your kids are working on their hairdo creations, ask a few more questions:

  • Do you feel proud about the work you did to plant these seeds?
  • How did it feel to take care of the soil and wait so long?
  • Was this project too easy for you?
  • What is something we could do next time that is more challenging? Perhaps a different type of seed? Or maybe plant things in a garden outside?

Understanding that results come from real effort is the groundwork for promoting a growth mindset. Learn more about growth mindset with books, printables and activities at You’ll find fun stuff for your toddler, preschool, pre k, or kindergarten age kids.

Children who start school with a strong growth mindset achieve more success and enjoy learning outside of school, too. By nurturing a growth mindset early in a child’s life, it will take root and flourish, throughout school and into adulthood. Happy planting!

Want more at-home fun creating cool stuff and making beautiful things? Check out more Maker Monday projects right here.

Do you have an idea for a Maker Monday craft project? If so, please share it with Kidsburgh! Send your maker activities to