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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Crafts for Kids: Toy Creations

By Scarlet Paolicchi


homemade toysIn my house, we always seem to have an abundance of paper towel and toilet paper rolls! We constantly look for ways to repurpose material in our home, so I’ve come up with a few ideas to reuse these rolls as crafting material for my kids. Making homemade toys is a great way to reduce waste while inspiring your kids to use their imaginations!

1.    Finger Puppets: Simply draw a face on the roll with a marker or add construction paper hair and clothes for a three-dimensional effect. Little extras, such as real buttons and cotton hair, can help your puppets come alive! Next, just pop them on your fingers and start playing!

2.    Animals: Paper rolls make great bodies for animal creations. Turn your tube horizontally and use another roll or construction paper to add legs. Let your kids use their imaginations to create their own jungle safari or zoo—they can even use the rolls to make trees and fences!  

3.    Airplanes and Cars: My kids love playing make believe with toy airplanes and cars, and they love it even more when they can make their own! Create airplanes by using the tube as the body and construction paper for the wings, tail, and nose, and take a marker to draw on the windows. Make cars by laying the tube horizontally and cutting two spots for the seat and steering wheel. Wheels can be made from leftover cereal boxes and affixed with brass paper fasteners so they can be moved around in a circle! Let your kids get creative by painting the details of the airplanes and cars in their favorite colors and designs. 

4.    Fairy-houses: Stand the tube upright and allow your kids to add their favorite design with markers or crayons. Help them cut holes to create doors and windows or by drawing on the roll directly. Make a “roof” from construction paper, shaping a cone and gluing it onto the top of the roll. Encourage your children to create a whole town; you can even add fairies and other creatures from the woods using clothespins or stickers!

These activities will help inspire kids to use their imagination and teach the importance of reusing materials when possible. The best part is, they will have loads of fun playing with their homemade toy creations!  

I'd love to hear about things you have made from toilet paper rolls. What ideas can you share?

Note: For safety, please supervise children when using scissors and other sharp objects.

Photo courtesy of Scarlet Paolicchi.

1 Comment so far

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On Friday, May 24, 2013, Cyndi from Reduce Footprints wrote

How cute and imaginative! :-) My use for toilet paper rolls isn't nearly as fun ... I shred them up and use them in my compost and I mix some into my containers when planting tomatoes ... they seem to love the "food".


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