I expect we have a variety of readers out there. Some of you have well-stocked craft boxes while others of you are just starting out. I hope this list will help you both. Feel free to share your favorite creativity supplies in our comments. We'll try to update the list periodically so check back from time to time for new ideas.
So for starters, this is what I have gathered for our Learning Center. I've highlighted in red the items I think you have to have and in blue other items that are handy and helpful to have around. For you beginners out there, don't rush out and buy everything on the list. Slowly accumulate what you think your children will enjoy using. For you experienced crafters, see if there is something new that piques your interest. Watch for these items to crop up in my posts, we use almost all of them regularly.
Scissors: a pair for you and a kid-safe pair for each helper
Glue: stick and paste, glue gun (personally I loathe glue guns, but I know many of you love them)
Tape: scotch and double-stick
Paper: white printer paper, construction paper, card stock, large roll of paper
Contact paper or access to a laminating machine
Pencils and Pens
Watercolor paints and paintbrushes
Stickers: big, small, cheap, alphabet, animals, anything!
Pompom balls in various sizes and colors
Bubbles: for us these are indispensable, but every family is different
Cookie Sheet:use the one from your kitchen or buy a cheap one just for your craft center
Pipe Cleaners: multi-color
String or twine
Plastic zipper bags
Cups: plastic or Styrofoam
Trash: clean cardboard boxes and plastic packaging from food items, toilet paper rolls, rinsed bottles, etc. Everyone has this stuff, so put it to use.