Braiding is so relaxing yet stimulating at the same time. I’ve just written a Craftsy post on Braids every Weaver should know. The post is an overview, with links to tutorials, of a few different braid structures that fall into a weavers journey. The slentre or loop braid, lucet braiding and the wonderful Kumihimo braiding.
The best instruction for accessible Kumihimo that I have ever seen is by Shirley Berlin in Handwoven Magazine May/June 1999. She shows you how to set up a 16 strand braid on a circular cardboard disk, emulating the traditional Japanese Marudai stand, then it is followed with a very direct and easy way of designing your own 16 strand patterns by Alison Irwin. I have used this tutorial repeatedly over the years to young children and teaching teens. SO easy to produce a very impressive and complex braid.
A doubled 5 perle cotton for each strand makes quite a thick braid and is easy for beginners to manipulate. As teachers have said that many children are loosing the development of fine finger dexterity this is a good activity and skill for many reasons.