Sunday, April 12, 2015

Earth Day, Clowns and Toilet Paper Rolls, Oh My!


I am pretty sure that I am NOT the only art teacher, who thinks about how to use empty toilet paper rolls. Granted, maybe the only one who thinks about it while falling asleep...........
Probably the ONLY one, who had to come up with a NICE way to tell the cleaning lady NOT to throw them out. (Don't judge me!)

        Anyway- got some STUFF I want to use up and Earth Day is this month.... Have no idea why I decided to make a clown, except that I think making the hands and feet large would be easier for my students. And clown parts tend to be exaggerated.

Decided to gather up a bunch of stuff this morning to create a sample project for my little ones  to make in recognition of Earth Day. Need to seriously use the empty toilet paper rolls!

 This project will cost next to nothing to make. I have a lot of samples of Smart-fab, again DON"T judge me! Lots of leftover yellow fun foam from making bananas for community theater. I have a box of yarn along with many other wonderful craft items that can be used by my students for  embellishment.

After setting out all the goodies I planned to use. I drew a few body parts for the clown to create tracers. Also, made a tracer for the collar.  I cut that tracer in half so that I can teach/reenforce folding for symmetry and ease of cutting.
Traced body parts onto the foam, collar onto Smart-fab.

Added hair and hat shape to foam. Colored everything with Sharpies, not happy that they smudged a little. Will need to caution kids about that. Body is a 8"x 6" piece of Smart-fab, which by the way, did NOT bleed through to the table when colored!
Cut everything out to assemble it all.
Wrapped body around the toilet paper roll and tucked it in. May end up stapling it later.
Punched the holes for the arms and legs. (Actually tested out all the materials to make sure it would be easy enough for children to do.)

Used a 15" piece of yarn through each pair of holes. Put hands and feet on the yarn and double knotted it. Won't be using the pony beads as it was too difficult for me-which translates as too difficult for students.
Will be using the above photos and teaching students to knot, they will need to know this for future projects.  Collar goes on! Head goes in the top! Check out my clown!!

I plan to introduce this lesson with paintings of clowns-will use happy NOT scary images. I will be looking for a storybook with clowns and/or a circus theme. Suggestions welcomed!

I'm planning that this will take 2-3 class sessions. I won't be starting this until the week after next. Because Friday is mask day for the 5th graders-so I will have a sub.

I will also be out on Tuesday and Wednesday BECAUSE my daughter is blessing me with another grand baby! This will be #5. My son has 3 and now my daughter will have 2!

Will post photos of my student's clowns sometime in the future along with other photos of finished projects that weren't ready when I blogged about them.

Again, THANKS for reading this!!


  1. Thank you, I'm looking forward to doing it with my students!