Even though Earth Day is over, we’re still working out way through the half a dozen Earth-friendly craft books we checked out at the library. I am constantly amazed at the incredible free resources that are available at the library! Today, we’re working from the book, Recycled Crafts Box, by Laura C. Martin. I have especially loved this book because it gives the history of products like paper and plastic and explains the manufacture process as well as the recycling process. It was really informational and I even learned a few things. For instance, did you know that plastic NEVER decomposes? I knew it would take awhile, but I thought it would rot eventually. Apparently not. Knowing this has really inspired me to recycle plastic with fervor! Anyway, check out the book — it’s GREAT resource for Earth Day and every day!
One of the crafts I really liked from the book was a paper bead necklace. Normally, I find the paper bead thing difficult and tedious, but with this version, you put a STRAW inside the paper and then snip it to make the beads — pretty cool, huh? Let’s get started!
What You Need:
- Scrap paper or old wrapping paper
- Yarn or boondoggle string
What You Do:
Begin by coating the entire back side of your paper with glue. Make sure you get all the way to the edges.
Next, lay a straw close to the edge and fold over a little paper so the straw is covered. Press the paper down on the other side of the straw to create a nice seal.
Begin rolling the straw towards the remainder of the paper in order to create a very long paper bead. I was really surprised at how well the 3 year olds did with this task. At the beginning, the rolls were a little loose, but by the end, they were keeping the beads nice and tight. Yeah for fine motor skills!
Once the paper is all rolled up onto the straw, add a little extra glue to the edge and press down in order to create a good seal. The kids really liked this step for some reason.
Set aside and wait for it to dry. In the mean time, grab some more paper and begin again! We did about 8 long beads and that seemed to be enough for two necklaces.
Once the beads are dry (about 20 minutes or so), you can snip them with scissors to create little beads. Fun!!
I was a little concerned about the seal, so I did end up putting a little tap across the end, but I don’t know if you really need to do that.
Once the beads are snipped, you can string away! I had the girls use boondoggle string because it’s pretty stiff and way easier to stick through a bead than yarn. They seemed to do a great job making their necklaces! Before they started stringing, I tied a bead on the end of the necklace to make a “stopper”.
They loved this activity!
Hard at work! Concentrate!
Finished!! This little piece of beauty was worn for the rest of the day with pride and now hangs on her door knob to her room. I am so pleased with the way they turned out!