This is a fun and easy color, cut and paste craft that uses string or wool to create the cage bars.
Florence asked: Nice craft but what age or ages?
Good question! Young children (preschoolers) can make it using the simple dotted line rectangles for cutting out the animals (good scissors practice). Grade school children can also enjoy the craft cutting all around the animal or drawing their own. It makes a nice complement to a first research project. Children just able to read/print can write a few facts about their animal on an index card and slide it behind the strings on the back of the craft.
- thin cardboard (old cereal boxes work very well),
- something to color with,
- wool, string or ribbon
(we used white wool and found it easy to work with)
- Optional: construction paper
Train Option: You can add a construction paper border and some wheels to turn your zoo cage into a train car.
If you're doing this as a classroom or daycare project, the teacher can create a simple paper train engine.
Link each child's train car onto the engine to create a long classroom train.
- Print out the template of choice. (or draw your own animal!)
- Color the pieces as appropriate and cut them out. There is a dotted rectangular outline around each of the animals.
- Young children can cut around this outline for some scissors practice (just don't decorate your cardboard too much as the template piece will cover up most of it).
- Older children can cut all the way around the animal.
- Cut out a rectangular piece of thin cardboard about 6" x 8".
- Optional: Decorate the thin cardboard with the habitat of your animal. Kaitlyn glued a wavy piece of green construction paper "grass" on her cardboard. You can get quite creative during this step or keep it fairly simple like Kaitlyn did.
- Glue the animal you've chosen onto the scene you've created.
- Cut slits all along the top and bottom edge, about 1" apart (it doesn't have to be an exact inch, but try to keep the space between your notches a fairly equal distance).
- Take a piece of string or wool and starting at the back of your project (so the dangly end is at the back) wrap it around and around your craft, slipping the string into the notches.
- If you leave a fairly long dangly end, I find it easier to wrap without the first notch slipping out and you can tie the beginning and ending dangly ends together to hold them.
- Keep the string fairly tight, but not so tight that it bends the cardboard.
- Optional: Add a bit of scotch tape to the back of the project to help hold the string.
- Optional: Do a short research project on your animal. What kind of habitat does it live in? What does it like to eat? What part of the world is it from? You can print your research on an index card and slide it behind the strings on the back of the craft.
- Close the template window after printing to return to this screen.
- Set page margins to zero if you have trouble fitting the template on one page (FILE, PAGE SETUP or FILE, PRINTER SETUP in most browsers).