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Make Your Own Recycled Insects

Make your own DIY insects with recycled materials from home! 

Spring is here! It’s a great time for exploring outdoors and then coming in for a bit of a crafting break. These simple-to-make recycled insects are a fun craft for kids and parents of all ages. Pull a few items from the recycling bin and grab your Kid Made Modern Arts and Crafts Library! Read below for the full tutorial.

Materials Needed:

  • Arts and Crafts Library

  • Washable paint

  • Paintbrushes

  • Recycled egg cartons

  • Recycled paper tubes

  • Recycled cardboard

  • Recycled plastic spoon (wash it first!)

  • Hot glue gun (*always have an adult help you with this!)

 

 

Butterfly

To make the butterfly, begin by drawing the shape of the wings onto a piece of thin cardboard (like a cereal box). Cut out the wings using the scissors in your Arts and Crafts library. Next, choose a color of paint and paint the wings. Allow them to dry. 

Once the wings are dry, plug in your hot glue gun. Carefully glue the plastic spoon (upside down) into the center of the wings to make the butterfly’s body. Choose two googly eyes from your craft library and glue them onto the spoon. Cut a glittery pipe cleaner in half and glue the two pieces to the top of the spoon to create antennae. Finally, use the regular glue from your craft library to glue sequins onto the butterfly’s wings. Once dry, your butterfly is complete!

Caterpillar

First, carefully cut out a section of the egg carton to make the caterpillar’s body. You may want an adult to help you with this part. Once cut, paint the egg carton (I chose green!). When your paint is dry, plug in your hot glue gun.

Carefully use hot glue to glue beads all over the caterpillar’s body to create spots. Glue two googly eyes to the front of its face. Choose three craft sticks from your craft library and glue them to the bottom of the egg carton. Make sure a little bit is sticking out on each side. These will be feet!

Next, curl the ends of two pipe cleaners to create antennae. Bend the other end of the pipe cleaner into a short L shape. Use hot-glue to glue the “L” part of each pipe cleaner to the top of the caterpillar’s head. Hold it in place for a minute as the glue dries to help it stay upright!

Ladybug

The first step to creating the ladybug is to cut your paper tube. First, cut it in half lengthwise so that it is about 4 inches long. Next, split the tube so that it becomes an arch shape. Cut along the length on each side to make this shape. Once your tube is cut, use your washable paint to paint it red. Allow the paint to dry. 

Once your paint is dry, plug in your hot glue gun. Use one of the black felt pieces from your craft library to cut out a head for your ladybug. Glue this to one side of the paper tube. Pick out the mini black pom-poms from the craft library and glue these on to create spots! Glue two googly eyes onto the head and create antennae from a black pipe cleaner. Glue these on just like you did with the caterpillar, by bending the bottom into an “L” shape.

Finally, make some legs! Cut three black pipe cleaners in half. Bend each into an identical “L” shape. Glue them to the bottom of the paper tube so that the bottom of the “L”s stick out to become feet!

Bumblebee

Lastly, let’s create the bumblebee! Begin by cutting the body from a paper tube, just like you did with the ladybug. Create an arch shape from the paper tube and then paint it yellow with your washable paint. Allow it to dry completely.  

Once dry, plug in your glue gun. Bend 3-4 black pipe cleaners into a “C” shape. Use hot glue to glue these onto the paper tube, following the curve. These create the bee’s stripes! Trim off any excess. Next, choose a large, black pom pom to be the bee’s head. Glue this to the front of the bee. Glue on two googly eyes. Cut two thin strips from a piece of black felt and glue them on as antennae. Cut a tiny triangle from the same black felt and glue it to the back of the bee to make a stinger.  

Lastly, use light blue felt to cut out two teardrop-shaped wings! Glue these onto the bee’s back, just below the head.

Add A Little STEAM!  

Want to learn more about insects?! Have a parent help you do a little research on the internet or check out a book about bugs from your local library! What makes each of the insects you created unique?

Take a nature walk and look for insects that live in your backyard! Be gentle and careful as you observe the bugs in their habitats. How many different kinds of insects can you find? 

 

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