Monday, December 5, 2011

Magazine Creative Challenge: Christmas Countdown Paper Chain

Grrrrr, life gets busy sometimes.  TinkerLab held this wonderful creative challenge today involving magazines.  I've known about it for at least a month, but I allowed time to creep away.  Lucky for me my daughter is off school early this week for conferences, so as soon as we arrived home, I bombarded her with the challenge.  "What can we make with magazines?" I asked her.  In the Christmas mode already she began spitting out ideas....decorating boxes for Christmas presents, collages, bows (for presents...hmmmm...there's a thought), and finally, a countdown chain for Christmas.  Easy, festive, we had our winner.
Materials needed for Christmas countdown paper chain:
  • magazines
  • stapler, tape, or glue
  • scissors  
 The children began by cutting strips of paper from a magazine.  Ariel looked for colorful pages.  Michael cut what ever he could, and gave up quickly.  I encourage him with scissor practice but he becomes frustrated easily.  I should have torn sheets from the magazine for him to cut but I was busy with my own project which I'll share towards the end.
Ariel stapled each link of the chain.  
 It grew and grew!
 Using construction paper and markers, my daughter designed a sign, taping it at the top.  I wasn't in the room so she sounded out the word "Christmas" on her own.    
 Ariel's completed chain.
 I hung it in a door frame and each day we'll cut a link as we countdown to Christmas.  

More you say?
  • make a chain for your Christmas tree but cutting appropriate sized strips.  I tried to get the kids to do this but my daughter said, "mom, do you know how long that would take?"  Yes, yes I do...
  • Before stapling, taping, or glueing the strips together, lay them all out, spread glue on them, and add a bit of glitter.  Once they are dry, link them together.  I also prompted my daughter towards this, but apparently, she didn't want to spend all day on this project.    

 While Ariel was making her paper chain, I was trying out the "bow" idea she mentioned during our brainstorm session.  I too, cut paper strips with fancy scissors.  Then I rolled them around a pencil giving them some curl.
 I made a bunch of curls.
Once the curls were made, I stapled them together making a curly bow (pretend the pink box is a present).  I think it came out pretty good but my daughter didn't care for it much.  My son, could have cared less. Personally, I think it's a  great way to recycle old magazines and save money on decorating presents that are going to be ripped open anyway.  

1 comment:

  1. sorry for chiming in so late -- my daughter has been making paper chains too. it's such a great way to help children understand the abstract (to them) idea of how many days are left. i love how she spelled out cismas all my herself. awesome!



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