I put these photos, and a video, together for a math teacher friend, Lana, a couple of years ago, and thought I had made a post about it. Lana reported back that she had made it will kids, and that they had enjoyed it.
I’ve been posting projects, weekdays, on twitter, from my blog. Wanted to feature this one today, but turns out I never did write a post. Made a video, took some photos, but never wrote about it here.
It’s a fun structure, not too hard to make. I’m thinking of it now as a fun things to make and send in the mail.
Something about how it is cyclical feels appropriate for for the times right now. Can be made from lots of different kinds of papers. Old pages from calendars, maps, and grocery grocery bag, or just regular copy paper can all be used.
Folding pattern shown above. Video tutorial below.
A sturdy paper can be set up to make this funny little shape below.
The highlight of the day, for me, was making these sewn journals with 4th & 5th graders.
The book block was made from 4 pieces of 11″ x 17″ papers folding into origami pamphlets, then sewn together side-by-side. All the holes for sewing were punched by paper punches.
Wallpaper-sample covers were attached by threading ribbons through holes in the cover and endpapers.
This project ran a bit over time. We were suppose to finish in 45 minuets, but it took 50 minutes. No one complained 🙂
These books, like most of the other books made yesterday, were constructed without glue, The only exception is the envelope books. I didn’t exclude the use of glue intentionally, but I guess I think about glueless structures more often than not.
This was the last class of this school season. Now I can get back to some housecleaning.
Today, when I walked into the class they were finishing up going over math problems that had been copied on to half sheets of paper. When they were done the teacher asked them to put away the papers, and we got to work.
My agenda was to guide the students through making an origami pamphlet out of a 19″ x 23″ sheet of paper, followed by making a book cover with pockets. What was unexpected is that they finished this all in 48 minutes, which left us with an extra 12 minutes. This rarely happens. I was about to hand to class back over to the regular classroom teacher when I remembered those math sheets.
We had just made the origami pamphlet out of large papers, and I had gone over the directions slowly and explicitly, so I thought that these first graders would enjoy making tiny little books using the very same methods of folding as they did in the bigger books.
They were stars. They remembered the steps and made their new little books in about a minute. Then they got to work.
Now, remember, these are first graders whose writing skills are just beginning to emerge, but, for the most part, the fact that their writing skills were limited didn’t bother them in the least.. I was lucky enough to hear an exchange of thoughts between two students: one child immediately got to work writing about rainbows and ribbons. The girl next to her bewailed that she didn’t know what to do. The prolific child told her classmate to just write words, but the girl said she didn’t know any words. Undaunted the rainbow girl advised her friend that she should just make up words. This turned out to be a satisfying suggestion, and the formerly clueless child got right to work.
It’s been my experience that if children are given little blank books they start writing.
Today I saw this happen again. As soon as the class finished constructing their books there was hardly another word spoken in the room as they all wrote, drew and imagined.
I recently had a hankering to locally source (scavenge) some materials to use to make a book.
I have a bit of a collection of materials from a couple of fine local businesses. One is Blind Buck Interiors, a drapery and upholstery business, which has provided me with a many wallpaper and fabric sample books. Another is the Battenkill Creamery, a dairy which has a dedicated herd from which they process their own milk right on the farm. The milk can be bought in returnable glass bottles topped with a substantial plastic cap, which is not returnable. I have lots of caps.
I took some milk caps and sewed them on to some upholstery samples.
I started this project mostly because I had been admiring some circles that my daughter had been coloring in. She had made a graphically lovely pages of colored in circles, and I wanted to do some colorful circles too. I had some leftover scraps of watercolor washes lying around, so I punched out some circles and glued them to the caps.
I sewed in just a few signatures, using a simple butterfly stitch that I picked up from one of Keith Smith’s books. I used round shoe laces instead of thread, as the proportions seemed right and they were handy. One thing I like about making books is being able to use anything I feel like using to assemble a book.
This little book stands alone in how it stands alone. It already has a new home, but while it was still here every time I saw it I felt happy. It just looks so silly and lovely.