Animal House

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Animal House
Total Time 1 to 2 hours Ages preschooler

Your child's plush friends will find this cottage-style cardboard dog house a most inviting place to be. We shingled our lift-off roof with strips of craft paper, but you could also just use a coat of paint.

What you'll need

  • 2 cardboard boxes (ours are 16-1/2 inches tall)
  • Craft knife (parents only)
  • Acrylic paint
  • Foam tray or plate
  • 3-inch-wide foam roller
  • Masking tape
  • Scissors
  • Brown craft paper
  • Glue stick
  • Scrap of card stock
  • Marker

How to make it

  1. Flatten one of the boxes. Use the craft knife to cut one side open so that the entire box can lie flat, unprinted side up.

  2. Pour the acrylic paint into the foam tray or plate. With the foam roller, paint boardlike stripes on the box.

  3. After the paint dries, cut out a door and windows with the craft knife.

  4. Reassemble the box inside-out, using masking tape on the inside to seal the bottom and any open seams. Fold the top flaps into the box. Trim the flaps if they block the windows.

  5. For the roof, use the craft knife to cut the second box in half diagonally. With the scissors, cut the craft paper into 4-1/2-inch-wide strips that are as long as the width of the roof (we used 20). To create the scalloped edge, accordion-fold each strip into 4- to 5-inch sections. Cut the bottom of each folded strip into a half-circle, leaving at least 2 inches untouched at the top. Unfold the strips. Working up from the bottom edge of the roof, attach the strips to the roof with the glue stick, overlapping the strips as shown.

  6. Cover the triangular panels on the front and back of the roof with craft paper.

  7. For the nameplate, write a name on the scrap of card stock with marker. Adhere it above the door with a glue stick or tape.

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