Friday, October 21, 2011

How To: Make puzzles from coloring pages!

We've all been sick this week, and because of that we've all been cooped up in the house for way too long. Taylor especially has had a hard time dealing with a sad, screaming baby brother and a very sleepy, ornery mommy. So today I thought we'd do a little project together. Tay is obsessed with puzzles right now, so I thought we'd make some out of coloring pages. It turned out so well I'd like to share it!

Here are the materials you'll need:

Cereal/oatmeal/popcorn/cracker box (yay for recycling!)
Coloring pages or art drawn by your kiddo
Cutting board
Exacto knife
Spray adhesive

First, cut out the section of your box you'd like to use for your puzzle. I used a popcorn box and it was just the perfect size.

Next, color! Tay colored a Transformers picture, and Mommy had to get in on the action and colored a Super Why page.

If your cardboard is smaller than your coloring page, figure out what section of the page you want to be your puzzle. The easiest way for me to do this was to hold the cardboard behind the page and put it up to a light source. Trace the cardboard on the backside of your coloring page. Don't cut it out until you've glued the pieces together. It'll be much easier that way.

Using spray adhesive in a well-ventilated area, lightly spray both the cardboard and back of the coloring page, paying special attention to the corners. Allow pieces to sit for a few seconds, and then glue together using the outline you traced as a guide. Press well to ensure they're bonded completely.

Using an exacto knife and straight edge, cut off the extra pieces of your coloring page.

Now you should have a nice page glued well to the cardboard.

Next you need to draw out your puzzle pieces. I actually looked at another puzzle of Taylor's to get an idea of what puzzle pieces look like and how they go together. You could also make it easier on yourself and cut out simple squares. But of course I have to make everything difficult.

Again using your exacto knife, cut out all your pieces.

Now let the kids have at 'em! Taylor loved his little custom puzzles so much and after he finished both of them he was begging me to make more. I've created a monster! This was a pretty simple project and is a great way to reuse boxes that would normally just get thrown away, plus it's a fun way to preserve your child's artwork.

If you make one of these, please let me know how it turned out!

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