Promoting Literacy - Making Books with Children
Do your children like making their own books? Otis makes so many of them. Often tiny books with lots of little drawings or notes in them! So I wanted to experiment a little and show him some new ways of making books. Here are a few ideas we've tried recently, some of these he has made completely independently and others with some help.
- Hole punch and tie with ribbon, twine or wool.
- Bind with embroidery thread.
- Staple or staple and cover with washi tape - for decoration and safety.
- Hole punch and keep together with hinged rings.
- Sew with a sewing machine - we've used a straight and a zig zag stitch.
Some of the materials we have used in our book making:
- Paper - different sizes, we usually have A4 and A5.
- Card - we like different colours and find having a card cover protects the book and it holds up better.
- Hole Punch.
- Bulldog Clips - these can help the child hold the paper in place while they are using the hole punch or even sewing the book together.
- Ruler and Pencil - to line the holes up straight and to measure their placement.
- Ribbon, Twine, Embroidery Thread, Wool - different materials for tying books together.
- Stapler - we've recently found some coloured staples and this has added to the fun!
- Tape or Washi Tape - we like to cover staples with tape so they don't catch on clothing and it looks nice!
- Embroidery Needle - for threading.
- Hinged Rings - we've used 25mm rings. These coloured rings are cute.
- Sewing Machine.
Tips for younger children;
- Have an example already made to give the child an idea of what to do/make.
- Prepunch the holes so the child only has to tie or thread the paper together.
I was going to write a little tutorial for bookbinding like this (above and below) as it's so good for children and their fine motor skills, however, the instructions here at The Hungry Artist are really good and almost exactly how we made ours! Their illustrations are really clear. To start with we taped the end of the string (we used embroidery thread) to the back cover and when the binding was complete we removed the tape and tied both ends of the thread together. With a tight knot, the book stays together really well!
Sewing is now Otis' favourite way of making books! He's made a lot! Experimenting with different colour threads and different stitch type makes it a little more interesting! As the child is only sewing a straight line this is a good way of introducing the sewing machine. We've (temporarily) put the sewing machine on the children's art table so Otis can access it and use it safely.
Otis doesn't just use the books for writing stories, he writes (maths) sums in them, makes drawings and lots of random things. It's nice to put a few away in his memory box to look back on in the future!