My First Day of School

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My First Day of School
Total Time 1 hour Ages school-age

Capture all the details of your child's first day of school with this adorable craft project. It'll become a keepsake that both you and your child will love looking at when they are older. 

What you'll need

  • 2 paper plates
  • Construction paper: orange, yellow, blue, green, red and color for hair (we used brown)
  • Flesh-colored acrylic paint
  • Crayons: black, pink, red, brown
  • 4 15-inch long pieces of white yarn
  • 4 pennies
  • Scissors
  • White craft glue
  • Sturdy tape (such as packaging or shipping tape)
Helpful Tip:

Construction paper is inexpensive and provides hours of delight. Be sure to have some on hand at all times.

White craft glue is our favorite, however white school glue also works great for construction paper projects.

As an added bonus, have your child paint their hand, then press their hand print to the back of the project.

How to make it

  1. Paint the backside of one of the paper plates (rounded side facing up) completely with flesh-colored paint. For the second plate, only paint its center with the flesh-colored paint. Set aside to dry.

  2. Cut out four basic shapes from colored construction paper. We made a green triangle, blue rectangle, red square, and a yellow circle. You can use everyday objects, such as a jar, to trace the circle and a straight edge to create the others. You can also use cookie cutters. 

  3. Use a black marker to write the following on each shape: Triangle – My First Day, Square – My First School, Rectangle – My First Lunch, Circle - My First Teacher

  4. Using a black crayon, have child fill in the “firsts” in each shape (i.e. My First Day = date of the first day of school) or you can write it for them if they like.

  5. From one sheet of orange construction paper, cut a 3” wide strip from the end (should be approximately 3” x 8”).

  6. Use black marker to write “My First Day” on the orange construction paper. Be sure to leave about 2 inches on either side of the paper, as you will need room to place the hands.

  7. Turn the orange paper over--the side with the writing should be facing down. Glue the four pieces of yarn to the back of the orange paper.

  8. Trim the four pieces of yarn so they are each a different length.

  9. Take the four colored shapes and glue a penny to the back of each. (This will give the shapes a little weight so that they don’t fly around and become twisted together.) Pair each of the shapes with one of the pieces of yarn, and glue the end of the yarn to the penny on the shape.

  10. Take paper plate that is only partially painted. Using a drinking cup, small jar, or a can, trace two circles within the flesh colored area. Cut these two circles out. Place some glue on the back side of the circle and glue it to the front of the orange construction paper and let everything dry.

  11. Meanwhile, print out the hair pattern and choose either girl or boy hair, or draw your own freehand. Trace lightly onto the color construction paper that best matches the child’s hair. Cut out hair shape, and be sure to cut a little larger than the pattern at the top of the head to make sure you have enough to cover the paper plate. Set aside.

  12. Glue the hair in place at the top of the paper plate head.

  13. Draw on the features of the face using crayons.

  14. When the yarn and shapes are all dry, use some sturdy tape to reinforce the yarn on the back of the orange strip as well as covering the pennies on the backs of the shapes.

  15. Carefully turn the orange paper and shapes over. Glue the orange paper to the bottom section of the paper plate face. Let dry, then reinforce with some more tape.

  16. Make a loop with a scrap piece of yarn and tape it to the back of the plate so you can latch it onto a hook to hang up!

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