The Moroccan Handicrafts for Children

If you are studying North Africa with your students or if you simply want to expose your children to some of the beautiful creations of this culture, consider trying these Moroccan crafts for children.
About Morocco and its handicrafts
Situated between the Middle East and the African continent, Morocco has been an important independent state since at least 110 years before Christ. Over the years, several countries have controlled the region, resulting in great cultural diversity and amazing traditional craftsmanship.
Jewelry, belts, woven carpets, pottery, drums, and lamps are among Morocco’s most important handicrafts. Although many of these crafts involve elaborate work and precious materials, children can make simple versions of these beautiful projects.
Traditional Moroccan craftsmanship
If there is one travel tip that Journey Beyond Travel can give you before your adventure in Morocco, it is this one: pack light. After all, the less luggage you pack, the more room you’ll have for the myriad of crafts and souvenirs you’ll pick up along the way.
Morocco is a treasure trove of breathtaking scenery, dynamic colors and astonishing diversity, all of which are reflected in its art. Even if you don’t think you’re the type to overload yourself with knick-knacks, be prepared; your first glimpse of a tafraouti slipper might convince you otherwise.
Moroccan craftsmanship is as diverse and unique as the country itself, and the perfect memory of Fez will be totally different from the one that brings your memory back to Essaouira. Moreover, what you will find will truly be in the spirit of the place. After all, Morocco has not been a victim of mass production. In fact, almost everything you’ll see will come from just a few meters away, where traditional craftsmen still practice their craft in small workshops and community cooperatives.
Here are some of the products Morocco has to offer:
Slippers – Moroccan shoes, often called babouches, are handmade from locally produced leather. Although they are ubiquitous throughout the country, Fez is the place to find truly unique and well-made slippers. Fez’s famous tanneries provide the raw material, and you can watch the master craftsmen sew their latest creations in the small shops lining the narrow streets of the medina. Further south, Tafraout is also known for its shoes. However, unlike the duller variety of Fez, the babouches of Tafraouti are embroidered with luminous, almost psychedelic designs.
Carpets – Marrakech and Fez are two great places to find the perfect carpet. A guide can help you choose the different patterns, colors and sizes, as well as learn about the origin of the many symbols and patterns used. But don’t rush into small cooperatives. Many small towns have carpet and weaving cooperatives that will be happy to show you their products. In fact, if you already have something in mind, these small establishments are often happy to make a custom-made carpet to order.
Lanterns – Moroccan lanterns are wonderful pieces of handicraft and can really dazzle at night. Marrakech is home to most of the country’s lantern makers, but you can find them almost everywhere. The vendors can help you find certain shapes, sizes and colors, so be honest with what you are looking for. Even if they don’t have it, chances are they know someone who does.
Woodcarving – This is where Essaouira really shines. Although woodcarvers work all over Morocco, there is something special about twuia wood, which is only found on the south coast, and the people have been making use of it for centuries. From large chessboards to plates, small boxes and children’s toys, the sculptors have perfected the technique of extracting beauty from what seems banal, and few visitors leave without at least one little trinket that reminds them of the relaxed Moroccan coast.
Pottery – Moroccan pottery can vary greatly from place to place, but some cities have left their mark on the pottery trade. Safi is perhaps the most remarkable pottery town, with large markets dedicated to the sale of ceramics, as well as a wide variety of shops and styles. Safi also offers a more relaxed atmosphere for shopping, and as the pottery is made locally, you often deal with the very men who created the dish in their hands. Just outside Zagora, Tamegroute is known for its unique green glass pottery.
Not to mention oils and natural dyes, knitwear, kitchen utensils, tapestry, leather and countless other finds that you will come across as you stroll through the souks. Like so many others in Morocco, you will enjoy your market day with an open mind and a little curiosity. Be prepared to take your time, and be open to whatever comes to mind!
Doing Moroccan crafts with children
When studying Africa, it can be difficult for children to see the people and places they talk about in their textbooks. Crafts can be the ideal way for children to discover the beauty and excitement of Moroccan culture.

When doing Moroccan crafts with children, it is important to keep certain things in mind:

Many of these handicrafts have small parts and are therefore not suitable for very young children;
If possible, prepare all the materials before starting the project. Children hate waiting for glue or scissors;
Keep craft sessions short to keep children interested. A boat should not take more than 15 to 30 minutes.

Moroccan ankle bracelet

Many of these handicrafts have small parts and are therefore not suitable for very young children;
If possible, prepare all the materials before starting the project. Children hate waiting for glue or scissors;
Keep craft sessions short to keep children interested. A boat should not take more than 15 to 30 minutes.
More Moroccan handicrafts for kids
Need more Moroccan handicrafts for children? Try some of the following ideas:
Cut out squares of colored tissue paper on simple votive glass holders to create a mosaic effect;
Make a necklace of wooden beads with different strands;
Create beautiful works of art by making henna tattoo-inspired designs from ordinary cardboard;
Weave strips of colorful fabric into a tripod inspired by a Moroccan rug;
Make a friendship bracelet with red, green, and black thread embroidered in the colors of the Moroccan flag.

Whichever Moroccan craft you choose, children will have fun discovering this inspiring and creative culture.