Paper activities like these Intersecting Circles can keep kids interested for the long haul.
Paper activities like these Intersecting Circles can keep kids interested for the long haul.

Paper craft activities are fun and challenging for kids of all ages. They're easy to make, they bump kids' creativity into high gear, and supplies are easy to come by.

So gather up scissors, pencils, and (of course) paper, and spend some quality time on these terrific crafts. Use our instructions as a starting point -- don't be afraid to personalize these crafts with some original creative flair!

Cartoon Caper

Kids will delight in bringing their drawings to life as they make their own cartoons!

Intersecting Circles

Introduce kids to the Venn diagram used in science and math with this great paper activity.

Silly Sandwiches

The good news about these paper craft sandwiches? No refrigeration necessary.

Cutout Collage

Teach kids to craft an entirely new image from fragments of color.

Personal Headlines

Extra! Extra! Keep friends and family up to date with this paper activity.

Wing It

An ordinary piece of paper teaches how airplanes lift us off the ground in this exciting activity.

Keep reading to learn how to bring drawings to life in our first craft.

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Cartoon Caper

The Cartoon Caper kicks drawings into gear.
The Cartoon Caper kicks drawings into gear.

This paper activity turns kids' drawings into animated pictures!

What You'll Need:

  • Sheet of notebook paper cut into long strips
  • Pencil
  • Picture 1
  • Picture 2
  • Picture 3

Step 1: Fold a strip of paper in half. On the bottom flap, draw a cartoon that shows half of a simple action -- for example, a person sitting in a chair.

Step 2: On the top flap, show the other half of the action; for example, a person standing in front of a chair.

Step 3: Now roll the upper flap tightly around a pencil to give it a strong curl.

Roll the upper flap so that the lower flap's picture is visible.

Step 4: Hold the upper corner flat against the table, and move the pencil rapidly up and down as shown to make the flap unroll and roll up again. If you do it fast enough, it looks like a cartoon of a person sitting and standing over and over again.

Roll the top page to create movement.

Kids can draw anything they like: a dog running, a face smiling, a ball bouncing, and so on.

Investigate the next activity and turn math into art!

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Intersecting Circles

The Venn diagram shows what two groups have in common.
The Venn diagram shows what two groups have in common.

This paper activity for kids isn't just fun -- it's an introduction to an important tool in science and mathematics!

What You'll Need:

  • Markers
  • Paper
  • Old magazines
  • Scissors
  • Craft glue

Step 1: To make a Venn diagram, draw 2 overlapping circles on a piece of paper

Step 2: Cut out pictures from an old magazine to sort into groups. Try having kids choose one kind of picture to start with, such as pictures of animals, clothing, toys, etc.

Think of two different qualities to use for sorting the pictures. For example, animal pictures could be separated into two groups: animals with tails and animals with spots. Or clothing pictures could be divided into clothing with pockets and clothing with buttons.

Step 3: Place one group of pictures in the first circle and the other group in the other circle.

Step 4: Use the overlap section in the middle of the circles for pictures that fit both groups (animals that have tails and spots, clothing that has pockets and buttons).

The Venn diagram is complete! Glue the pictures in place to complete the diagram.

Kids can also try drawing and illustrating their own invented categories instead of using magazine pictures, sorting canceled stamps into Venn diagrams, or making a 3-circle Venn diagram with 3 categories that overlap!

Keep reading to learn how to make a paper craft that looks good enough to eat.

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Silly Sandwiches

It's probably not a good idea for your kids to eat the sandwiches in this paper activity, but they'll have fun coming up with all sorts of silly ingredients!

What You'll Need:

  • Construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Markers
  • Hole punch
  • Other craft supplies

Step 1: Cut out 4 light brown or white pieces of construction paper in the shape of a piece of bread.

Step 2: Glue 3 edges of 2 bread-shaped pieces together, leaving an edge unglued. When the glue is dry, stuff small scraps of paper between the 2 layers. Glue the open end closed.

Step 3: Repeat for the other 2 pieces of bread-shaped paper. Then cut out other ingredients to fill your sandwich.

Lettuce could be made from green paper, crumpled up, then glued to a bread slice.

Tomato slices could be "stuffed" to look more realistic (just as you did with the bread slices).

Use markers, the hole punch (to make Swiss cheese), and any other available craft supplies to complete the silly sandwich.

When the ingredients are complete, glue the layers together to make delicious-looking artwork!

Learn how to stimulate kids' creativity with a cutout collage in the next section.

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Cutout Collage

Shape a cutout collage creation.
Shape a cutout collage creation.

When this paper craft is finished, it will look much like the collages made by Henri Matisse. This famous French painter created similar designs when arthritis made it impossible for him to paint in his later years.

What You'll Need:

  • Colored construction paper or tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • White or black construction paper
  • Glue

Matisse used geometric and organic (those found in nature) shapes in his compositions. Geometric shapes, such as triangles, circles, and squares, are symmetrical. Organic shapes, on the other hand, are not symmetrical; they include squiggles and blobs.

Step 1: Begin cutting out shapes in many different sizes and colors from the colored paper. Once you have a collection of shapes, arrange them on a sheet of white or black paper.

Step 2: Glue the cutouts in place. If the collage is on white paper, mount the work onto black construction paper to create a striking contrast.

Keep friends and family up to date with the next craft. Learn to make the personal headlines activity on the next page.

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Personal Headlines

Kids are always informed with this paper activity.
Kids are always informed with this paper activity.

This paper activity helps kids' friends and family stay up to date by delivering personal headlines right into their mailboxes!

What You'll Need:

  • Old newspapers
  • Scissors
  • Card stock (cut in 4x6-inch pieces)
  • Glue
  • Markers
  • Postage stamps

Who are your kids? Where have they been? What are their hobbies? This fun fact-finding activity will help kids express themselves -- and share those expressions with the people who love them.

Have your kids go through a pile of old newspapers, cutting out and gathering words that express who they are, what they've done, and how they feel.

Step 1: Creatively position and glue those headlines on a side of a 4x6-inch piece of card stock. Make sure that all the edges are glued down securely so they can't be ripped off.

Step 2: Decorate those words with colorful markers, if desired.

Step 3: Once the glue and ink are dry (plan for overnight drying time in most climates), add a stamp, an address, a quick "hello" to the back of the card, and drop it in a mailbox.

Visit our final section and let an ordinary piece of paper teach kids how airplanes stay in the air.

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Wing It

This educational kids' activity uses paper and kids' wind power to demonstrate how humans learned to fly!

What You'll Need:

  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Ruler

Daniel Bernoulli, a Swiss scientist, discovered in 1738 that moving air has less pushing power than still air. This idea, called Bernoulli's principle, is used in the design of airplanes. To demonstrate the principle, cut a strip of paper 2 inches wide and about 8 inches long.

Step 1: Have your child hold one corner of a 2-inch side of the strip in each hand, and hold it just below her lower lip.

Step 2: Have your child gently blow across the strip of paper. She will see that the paper rises.

What happened? The air that flows over the top of the paper is moving air, so it has less pushing power.

The air pressure underneath the strip remains normal. The strong air pressure underneath pushes up and causes the strip of paper to lift.

Wings of airplanes are shaped with curved tops to make the air move fast, and the fast-moving air along the top of the wing reduces air pressure and causes lift.

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