My three year old was looking out the window today and suddenly yelled, “It’s the choo choo bus!” What she meant was “school bus”! That’s right, school is starting! The beginning of school for me is all about school supplies. Oh, how I loved the smell of a new box of crayons, or writing the first time with a new pencil or pen. And opening up a blank notebook? *swoon*
So, I hated it when I’d get to school and get my textbooks only to see some crazy person the year before had drawn Groucho glasses on George Washington’s face. Or more often, the edges of the book were torn, ripped and fraying. When I was in 5th grade, my mom was a room-mother and came to our class to teach us something that would save my yucky books AND give me that brand-spankin’-new feeling…
RECYCLING PAPER GROCERY BAGS INTO A BOOK COVER
It’s so easy. All you need is:
- large brown paper bag from the grocery store (they’ll give ’em to you for free but it would be better if you were using an old one. you know, for recycling sake.)
- tape (scotch or clear packing)
- miscellaneous decor (we’ll get to that later…)
1. Cut along the seam of the bag.
2. Once you hit the end (the bottom), cut around the edge until you cut the entire bottom off.
3. Now, set your book in the middle of you giant piece of paper bag. Make sure the print side is up.
(yeah, we don’t have any text books around here.
i had to use one of my old yearbooks. cool, huh?)
4. Now, fold the bottom edge up even with the bottom of the book. The bag probably already has some folds in it. Try to use those if you can.
5. Then do the same to the top.
6. Now, open up your book. I like to do the back cover first. Fold a section of the bag (about 2-4 inches) over the back cover.
7. Tape together. Don’t tape it TO the book. You want to be able to take it off and not damage the book if need be. But do try to tape it shut all the way. Packing tape really might be better than scotch tape.
8. Now to the front cover. The easiest way is to close the book all the way. Then fold the cover over where you want it. If you keep it flat and tape it down, it will probably be too tight when you do close it.
9. Now for the fun part: DECORATE IT! When I made these for the first time in 5th grade we did stencils and paint. Stickers would be fun. Or sponge painting would be cool. I went for the old standby: SHARPIES!
I put a scripture on mine. I tried to pick one that would be a good one for kids to say every day. By the end of the school year (or however long the book cover lasts) they’d have the verse memorized!
Hope you and your kids enjoy this! A free, recycled book cover that you can doodle on during class? It works for me!