Thursday, March 8, 2012

10 Ways to Create With Cardboard Tubes

Quite possibly one of our favorite things to create with is the lowly cardboard tube. 

But, really, it's the perfect craft supply. It's readily available, completely frugal, and very "green." 

Is there anything better? 

I've rounded up 10 fun projects to do with the empty cardboard tube.

1. Make a marble run. Check out this post from Teach Preschool to see how to use a few magnets and some cardboard tubes to make a really fun marble run.

2. Turn them into animals! Little Wonders Days shares these cute cardboard tube squirrels. 

3. Make a stethoscope. All For the Boys shows you how to make these fun & easy DIY stethoscopes.

4. Make monsters! Check out our fun googly-eyed monsters.

5. Make pretend play props. We used cardboard tubes to make logs when we set up our small world pond

6. Make jewelry. Kitchen Counter Chronicles made these adorable heart necklaces. (And I can attest to the cuteness! My girls received some in a Valentines swap!) Red Ted Art made fun wrist watches.

7. Make caterpillars. The Iowa Farmer's Wife shows you how to make this colorful caterpillar from an empty cardboard tube and pipe cleaners.

8. Explore a new culture. We crafted these fun kokeshi dolls while learning about Japan.

9. Make puppets. Check out these amazing marionettes from Red Ted Art!

10. Use them as stamps. We squished them into a heart shape and had fun stamping! You could try any shape such as a circle, star, diamond, or oval. 

*Bonus Activity - Let baby play with a few empty cardboard tubes for a fun sensory experience. Baby would also have fun putting them in and out of a box or basket! (As with all things, make sure to supervise baby while he's playing with the cardboard tubes.)

What have you made lately with an empty cardboard tube?

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  1. I have tons of cardboard tubes I've been saving for play time. You've given me some ideas I hadn't seen before. Thanks!

  2. fun ideas - I've been saving our tubes for a rainy day, can't wait to get them out!!

  3. Another fantastic list! Thank you so much for including me. I've had a couple of your other suggestions on my to do list :)

  4. 2 more for these great, versatile things:
    1) You can't forget the classic kazoo effect - putting it to you mouth and going "dododo dooo!" I just taught James this. :)
    2) For our church Easter event, we're creating biodegradable seed pots out of toilet paper tubes. Cut one end four ways, fold and stick with a dab of glue, fill with dirt, seed, and plant. Fun project.

  5. You can put small toys or candy in the tubes then wrap them in tissue paper. Leave the ends a little longer than the tube, and tie with ribbon. Great little gifts! I use them for "good deed gifts" for my twins! When I catch them playing nice, or putting away the toys on their own they get one. I put stickers, match box cars, animal crackers, candy necklaces, etc. in them.

  6. What a great list! Thanks for including ours! I love the paint/stamping with tubes idea. I really need to get around to doing it!

  7. You can also tape 2 tubes together side by side and wrap them in paper, decorate the outside and you have binoculars!


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