For the few elementary students who don't understand how art relates to their lives, I walked them through the process of toy making. Toys don't just appear on store shelves or in the bedroom toy box. Someone had to come up with the idea, make a preliminary sketches, present the sketches, rework the sketches, make pattern, choose the fabric (color and texture), or make a 3D model for hard plastic toys. I showed (and described) a few youtube videos that go through the elaborate process it takes to make a single toy for a kiddie meal.
I required my students to start with a sketch to be used as a pattern, and for those who needed something tactile, Wiki Sticks did the trick . They cut it out of paper first, and then two layers of fabric.
They ran fabric glue around the edge of one piece of fabric, leaving a few inches without glue. They added the second layer and once the glue was dry, they stuffed the opening with stuffing.
The openings were glued and clothes pins helped keep edges together until dry. Students used foam pieces, puffy paint, googly eyes, and buttons to decorate their toys. The project only takes an hour, but the knowledge that every toy they ever see was made by someone who went through a similar creative process, will hopefully last a life time.