Chinese paper lanterns are one of those craft projects we probably all did as a child. And if you didn’t, now’s the time! This is a simple yet effective project using paper and ribbon, and once your child has made one, there’s a good chance they’ll want to make more and more.
What you’ll need
- Paper or light cardboard (look for bright colours and bold patterns).
- Stickers or other decorations.
- Scissors (safety scissors for them if they are old enough; otherwise sharp scissors for you).
- Ribbon – paper or fabric. Keep gift ribbons you’ve received for craft projects such as this.
- Stapler or tape.
Making a basic lantern
To create the lantern, fold a sheet of A4 paper in half lengthwise. If you want a uniform look, use a ruler and pencil to lightly draw evenly spaced parallel lines from the centre to 2cm from the paper’s edge. Cut each line. Unfold the paper and line up the shorter edges before stapling or taping them together. The points on the centre fold should be pointing out. Cut the ribbon to the desired length, then staple on the inner top edges of the lantern to form a handle.
Your child might use the paper as you’ve supplied, or decorate it first with stickers, glitter, or anything else they have in mind!
Make it a decorating project
Once your child has got the hang of making a lantern, why not help them create a whole display. They make great decorations for cubby houses. You might hang them in a row on a balcony, or from trees in the garden. Or line up several in your child’s room. Use complementary colours and patterns, and they can create a striking display that complements your kid’s bedroom furniture.
Like using educational toys, teaching children different craft projects is a great way to encourage their creativity and imagination. Just be sure to supervise, especially when scissors, paint and glue are involved, and let them enjoy!