Valentine Tissue Paper Flowers

This technique for making tissue paper flowers is not new, but I have a new appreciation for its simplicity. If your students have had an overload of 2D work lately, try this crafty 3D one that will give them practice on folding, twisting, cutting and pulling. Oh, and make a pretty Valentine gift while they are … Read More

Mini Canvas Art

I brought back one of my favorites, mini canvas art, for an after school class today. Mini canvases, brush Sharpies and homemade craft stick easels. My lesson was about making art with letters, so they just drew their first initial in block form and decorated it with lots of patterns. A nice, simple way to make … Read More

Cheap Art Supplies at NAEIR

I recently found an amazing site that has some really cheap art supplies, among many other things. NAEIR offers official organizations access to thousands of brand new, high-quality products for a fraction of retail cost. NAEIR is a non-profit that takes in donations from corporations, and passes the savings on to groups that are dedicated to … Read More

Pipe Cleaner People

These little pipe cleaner people are easy to make and fun to pose with their bendable legs and arms. They measure a little under 3″ when done, and have lots of possibilities for art projects, including Keith Haring, who was famous for murals with simple, colorful figures. MATERIALS • Pipecleaners, two per student DIRECTIONS Follow the … Read More

Z-Fold Holiday Card

There’s nothing like a homemade card. I tried this Z-Fold Holiday Card to make a quick “quilted” image that didn’t actually call for any sewing. Another nice feature of it being a folded card is that it will stand on its own when finished. An instant display for holiday decorating. MATERIALS • Cream colored card stock, cut to 4.5″ … Read More

Giant Popsicle Stick Snowflake

‘Tis the season for holiday decorations, so this Giant Popsicle Stick Snowflake is my solution for some inexpensive flakes that have a lot more impact than paper ones, and will last for seasons to come. MATERIALS • Jumbo Craft sticks, 6 per snowflake • Craft sticks, 12 per snowflake • Mini craft sticks, 6 per snowflake … Read More

Miniature Snowman

Here’s a Miniature Snowman project that I did after school with a matchbox class awhile back. There’s just something irresistible about miniature art. I think the parents were just as charmed with these as the kids were. • Matchbox Tutorial PDF Template and directions MATERIALS • White card stock paper • Glue stick • Sharpie, ultra … Read More

Quilling Snowflakes with Bread Ties

Quilling is an art form that involves rolling, and gluing strips of paper together to create decorative designs. If you use bread ties instead, the curl stays and thus easier to glue too. MATERIALS • Craft sticks, regular size • Craft glue • Bread ties, white • Pencil • Magnetic strips (optional) DIRECTIONS 1. Students make … Read More

Model Magic Gingerbread Cookies

These Model Magic Gingerbread Cookies are so easy to make, thanks to the perfect gingerbread Model Magic color, also known as “Terra Cotta”. If you have cookie cutters to use, that would make things easy. But if not, forming your own head, arms and legs will make for a cookie with lots of personality. MATERIALS • … Read More

Paper Cactus

Thanks to craft paper punches, projects like this paper cactus are totally possible even for classrooms. I just recommend pre-punching the circles for a group of 25 or more. I learned the hard way. MATERIALS • Miniature clay pot, about 2″ tall (Michaels has them) • Model Magic (leftovers or any brown color) • Craft paper … Read More

Cake Sculpture, Miniature Style

Here’s an easy way to make a very yummy looking cake sculpture, thanks to all the great food-looking colors that Model Magic comes in. Their natural set makes a perfect chocolate and caramel, and the white looks like whipped cream every time. Need one more reason? Math is involved when circles are cut into quarters. Fractions … Read More

Halloween Boxes with Sharpies

My favorite part of these little Halloween boxes is the color combination. I love the soft orange and matte black and shiny silver. Fortunately, they all come from supplies that are very easy for kids to use too. MATERIALS • White paper jewelry boxes • Sharpie marker, black, fine tip • Sharpie marker, black, brush tip … Read More

Fall Leaf Matchbox Art

Little miniature paper leaves inspired this week’s Matchbox Art project. The best part was finding that they could be colored with markers to brighten and match them with other art. MATERIALS • Matchbox PDF Template (sleeve, tray and insert) • Papercutter or scissors • Stabilo markers • Mini paper leaves • Craft glue • Scotch tape … Read More

Matchbox Seashell Art

I’m tried some new Matchbox Seashell Art projects, and have found a lot of inspiration at my local Michaels store. These colorful little sea shells were perfect for a beach-themed box. MATERIALS • Matchbox PDF Template (sleeve, tray and insert) • Papercutter or scissors • Stabilo markers • Mini sea shells • Craft glue • Scotch … Read More

Craft Stick Crate Tutorial

As promised from a few days ago, my Craft Stick Crate tutorial. I can imagine these as a fun gift for parents, or maybe even a way to start a house. All kinds of possibilities. My sticks came from Pacon, which sells a variety of Creativity Craft Sticks at United Art & Education. • View and … Read More

Craft Stick Crate

I’m still playing with a stash of craft sticks from Pacon, and tried to make a copy of this little craft stick crate that I found at Michael’s. I plan to make a tutorial soon, but crafty folks out there may be able to see the basic construction from the photo. MATERIALS • Jumbo craft sticks, … Read More

Friendship Bracelet Tutorial

Did you know that friendship bracelets are made with six colors because that’s how many letters are in the word F-R-I-E-N-D? My school’s 4th graders once started the year off with a friendship theme, so I used the topic to teach students how to make make these, hence this tutorial to help me instruct 35+ students … Read More

Mom Pop Out Flower Card

My students are learning how to make pop out flowers this week, which make a pretty nice Mother’s Day card. Last year I did this with hearts, but I like this flower for this time of year, for all the obvious reasons. Supplies: • 12″ x 12″ solid cardstock scrapbook paper • 12″ x 12″ print … Read More

More Gold Rush People

I just had to share a few more Gold Rush figures made recently by 4th graders. Aren’t they adorable? They are shaped over clothes pins that were glued to wood bases I found at Michaels. They worked great and created a place for some accessories too, like bags of gold and little pick axes. A quick … Read More

Model Magic Miner

Here’s another idea of something to try with Model Magic. Just keep in mind that this figure was made by a ridiculously talented 4th grader, and is not what should be expected of a elementary school student, or even middle school. I expect to see Aidan S.’s art in a museum some day. He made this … Read More

Student’s Cast Tissue Tiles

Here they are, my student’s cast tissue paper tiles, taped on to some chipboard to make book covers. They look amazing with all the colors that bled together. To recap, I was first inspired by this Cast-Tissue post at dickblick.com. I ordered the black plastic rubbing plates and students simply applied 1″ squares of cheap bleeding … Read More

Miniature Cakes with Model Magic

So it turns out can make really cute miniature cakes with Model Magic because it comes in just the right cake and frosting colors. This may be one of my favorite Model Magic project so far. MATERIALS • Cardboard, 3″ cut round circles • Plastic cups, small, shot size for cake stand • 3″ plastic souffle … Read More

Cardboard Buildings

This craft project proved to be a good combination of art supplies: • LOTS of 5″ corrugated cardboard squares • Rolls of masking tape • Black Sharpies, fine tip • White Sharpie paint markers, water-based, fine tip Students made lots of cubes by taping together 5 squares on the inside, then decorating the outside. Some made … Read More

Giant Cardboard Glasses

Look at all these adorable glasses made from some old Cheez it boxes. It took a bit of prep work, but I love the creativity that came out with them. • View and download Giant Glasses PDF template PREP: I cut cardboard rectangles, about 8″ x 3.25″, and traced the frame on each. The inside holes … Read More

Holiday Matchbox Art

My Holiday Matchbox Art kids did a great job today, as they experimented with adding mini pom poms to their drawings. These two amazing 2nd graders, Rebecca and Violet, made them with both Hanukkah and Christmas in mind. Follow the link below to download the box templates and instructions. • View and download Matchbox Tutorial MATERIALS … Read More

Matchbox Art with Leaves

I’m continuing this class after school, which starts with a pre-folded box and allows students to color the inside insert and wrapper. I just found this leaf punch, which is the perfect size for creating a mini leaf collection. Materials: • White card stock paper • Glue stick • Leaf paper cutter • Waterbased markers • … Read More

Weaving Loom Board

posted in: Craft Sticks | 1

I keep looking for new ways to introduce students to weaving, and this one is working our pretty well for my students this week. Paper strips are woven in between rubber bands, which keep them from sliding out. PREP: Glue a frame for each student with craft glue. Let dry for at least a couple of … Read More

Juggling Balls

posted in: Art Camp, Misc crafts | 0

My mini art camp is just two weeks away, and I’m looking forward to trying some more outdoorsy things like these balls made from balloons and sand. 1. I used 9″ balloons and a funnel to fill them with sand. I think 12″ balloons would work great too. It takes some pulling and shaking to fill … Read More

More Canvas Journals

These journals are turning into one of my favorite projects. I’m loving how freely the kids paint when given one long piece of canvas instead of designing the front and back separately. CLASS ONE: Cut unstretched canvas into 8″ x 20″ rectangles. Students paint the primed side with one acrylic color, and then add patterns on … Read More

Foil and Sharpie Suns

If you’re looking for something different, but don’t want extra prep work, try having students drawing on aluminum foil sheets that are glued (with a glue stick) to a paper plate. The circle shape is built in, and the Sharpie color on foil never ceases to amaze. Especially when rainbows are involved, like Talia’s. Materials: • … Read More

Starting Paper Mache Ice Cream Cones

Time for one last paper mache project after school. Here’s a photo that explains how these ice cream cones are started. The flower pots from Michaels (about $1) offer a great heavy base so tall cones don’t fall over. Aluminum foil sheets are wrapped (about 5 per scoop) to make balls that can be stacked as … Read More

Mother’s Day Tissue Hearts

Here’s my solution this year for student’s Mother Day gift. It’s revisiting an old tissue paper technique that’s been around forever, and can really look nice if done well. PREP: I used our school’s die cut to make a heart for each student. I actually switched to heavy watercolor paper when my chipboard ran out. Also … Read More

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