story + art = great stART - Giraffe's can't dance - Red Ted Art's Blog : Red Ted Art's Blog

story + art = great stART – Giraffe’s can’t dance

| May 26, 2010 | 79 Comments

This week’s book & craft has been “brewing” for a while…  I am not sure why haven’t done it sooner, maybe I thought Red Ted was still too young. Well, he is in terms of  crafting, but he isn’t in terms of painting, sticking, helping and of course PLAYING! So, we embraced the craft – a great one for children 5yrs+ or with a helping adult!!! Red Ted loves the resulting marionettes!!! Without a further a do…

giraffe's don't dance

The Story

Giraffes Can't Dance Giraffe’s Can’t Dance, by Giles Andreae. Early this week, I already reviewed “Giraffe’s Can’t Dance”. Here we have it again: I have to confess to picking this book up, because I like the “format”. Our version is a smallish board book. I also liked the rhythm and rhyme of the book and Red Ted liked the bright colours. Here we have the story of a Gerald the giraffe that is, well, a little clumsy on his feet. Each year the jungle holds a jungle dance and Gerald feels left out has he is so “rubbish”. Sadly he wanders off… however, a small cricket helps him discover his “inner self”. A lesson: we are all good at something, as long as we find the right way for us. Hurray! Happy Ending.

Today we are going to make Gerald! The materials are very simple!

giraffe's don't dance craft

1) Materials: 2 loo rolls per Giraffe, 1-2 sheets of A4 in contrasting colours (red & yellow in our case), paints (red & yellow, I prefer acrylics as they don’t get so dry and crumble like some poster paints), brushes, scissors, glue and later chopsticks and string (not shown in photo, as only decided to add these later)

2) Paint two loo rolls yellow. Red Ted decided he “wanted” red, so I decided to make 2 giraffes with him. So we painted another 2 loo rolls red. I helped him, as he was getting a little tired!

3) We then dabbed on some spots in the contrasting colour with cotton wool. I think lots  of paint gives it nice “texture”.

4) Let it dry.

Start on the legs.

witches ladder

5) I didn’t have yellow paper, so I quickly “made” some with cotton wool and watered down paint… Just means you have to wait for it to dry. I only did one side. Don’t think it matters if one side is white and the other yellow. If your children have a longer attention span, they can help with this too!

6) Cut the paper in to even strips. I made mine about 1cm wide and used a ruler to help me (marked one sheet, but cut four sheets in one go). The neater and more even you cut, the better!

7) The “tricky bit”: Take one yellow and one red strip. It is kind of like pleating the two pieces of paper. Glue down the first two bits and then alternately fold over. Once you get to the end of the paper, I glued on another strip.  So each leg and neck is made of 2 yellow strips and 2 red strips of paper. Glue top down.

8) Make 5 for each giraffe (so we made 10 – got a little boring, I admit). Whilst I folded. Red Ted did some play gluing and play folding with extra strips of paper! I also made 2 smaller sets (about 1/2cm wide) in one colour for the horns and cut out some “ears”.

Cardboard tube craft

9) Cut down one loo roll for head (about 2/3rds)

10) Glue legs and neck on. I used cloth pegs to keep them in place whilst drying.

11) Glue on horns, ears and draw eyes/ stick on googly eyes

cardboard tube crafts

I found at this point that the giraffes were finished, but no so easy to play with, as the neck kept flopping about. So I decided to make marionettes out of them – I used some take away chopsticks (but lollipop sticks will do) and garden string!


We then revisited the story at bedtime. Red Ted was delighted! And the Gerald and Geraldine have indeed been doing LOTS of dancing!

And here, erm, we had some fun. Sorry for the lack of editing… and the poncy music! Ha!

What is your favourite Cardboard Tube Craft?

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Category: Kids Craft, Loo Rolls

Comments (79)

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  1. TheMadHouse says:

    This is a really cool idea. I love it

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Thank you 😉 we certainly had fun with them…. wonder how long they will “Live” – but then we can make somem more..

  2. Looking forward to when my little one is old enough to do things like this – looks fun!

    • Red Ted Art says:

      😉 I will be making them again when Red Ted is 5+. but dont underestimate th 2yrs olds now.. he LOVED the painting and watching me fold, whilst he glued… he feels really proud of “his” giraffes!!! Go on.. do it “earlier” than you think you can!!!!

  3. Michelle says:

    This is so cool!!! I can’t wait to see if my library has this book and make this project with Emily. I will totally be making my own too!!

    Thank you for sharing and linking up to stART :)

  4. This is adorable! I love it! Kudos to you for attempting a rather complicated activity with such a little one, too. :-)

    That book looks really cute, too. I haven’t run across it at any of our libraries.

    Thanks for linking up to Read Aloud Thursday!

  5. Natalie says:

    Those giraffes are awesome. We also enjoyed this book a lot.

  6. We love that book. I love how you did the craft. They turned out so cute!

  7. April says:

    Ooooh, I love the giraffes that you made. What a perfect storytelling prop. I remember learning how to make those “pleats” in step #7 when I was a little girl. I used to use them to make my own pop-out cards.

  8. JDaniel4's Mom says:

    These are the best. I loved seeing them in action.

  9. Charlene says:

    Wow what a great idea….and it came out so nicely. Love it! Dropping by via stART!

  10. LOVE this! Way too cute. It is nice when they’re a little older – you have a whole new world of crafting opened up to you. But you’re right – they joy of playing with the craft is fun at any age. :)

  11. Janelle says:

    Love those folded legs. They look like a lot of fun to play with.

  12. Anne@LittleSproutBooks says:

    adorable! I’m going to tuck this away until my guy is a little older – but looks like tons of fun!

  13. So cute! You’ve got mad craft skills!

    Visiting from WFMW

  14. meninheira says:

    Oh please, is so, so cute!! thanks a lot for joining to my blog party! (now the theme is “laundry”)

    Hugs from Spain

    meni ^-^

  15. Jenn says:

    Awww! So cute and sounds like a great bookl I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for linking up!

  16. Such a great art project, thanks for sharing!

  17. gnee says:

    Love the book and your fabulous giraffes…of course they can dance!

  18. Steff says:

    Genius- and so cute!

  19. Nikki says:

    That is soooooo sweet! My son will love that! Thanks for linking up to gettin ‘crafty on hump day :)

    • Red Ted Art says:

      OOh, would be fabulous if you made one with your son! Go on, you know you want to!! Thanks for hosting!

  20. Wow, thats incredible! I love it, but might feel the same way about Laci being too young, plus her attention span is super short. I will have to keep this in mind. As always, thank you for linking (BTW- I took care of the links on Wednesday’s post for you). ~Julie

  21. Oh I adore this project. It is going in my style file for sure!

  22. That is way, way beyond cute!!

  23. Very cute! Thanks for linking up to Finished for Friday!

  24. What a fun idea! Thanks for sharing @ Anything Related!

  25. Audra says:

    Once again. Such a cute idea!

  26. Gale says:

    Thanks for posting this! We did this craft and my kids just loved it. You can see pictures here:

  27. U-oh, now I DO need to place an Amazon order. Have poked my nose over this book for ages but don’t have it yet. Worth buying it just so we can make these .. just SO fab!! L will laugh his socks off. Can’t wait to play!


  28. Samantha Banister says:

    This is an AMAZING idea!!! I can’t wait to try this with my child!

  29. I love these. I have a stash of loo rolls, so fully expect to be making giraffes in the new year :)

  30. oh wow, they look GREAT :)

    Thanks for joining in Blog Gems. Jen

  31. B Fryman says:

    Those are really cute!!

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Aaaah thank you! We had real fun making (and playing) with these.. am surprised we still have them a year later more or less in one piece!

  32. Melissa says:

    We love this book and we read it regularly. Will definitely have to make these! Thank you so much for sharing such a great craft project.

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Aaaah thank you and pleased you like the book (I think it is lovely)… only think I would do differently on the giraffes is make the neck fatter and shorter… else we love them 😉

  33. Heather says:

    These are so cute! And I love that they’re made with tp tubes – my kids love to hoard the tubes for crafts. We’ll have to try this.

  34. Isil says:

    This is one of our favorite books. Defne will be delighted with these marionettes.

  35. Jennifer says:

    Cute! my daughter would love making those!

  36. Linking this up with us plus the organza flower made the Creative Bloggers’ Party & Hop better and more special. Thank you! And I hope you don’t mind if I ask you again to join us this Sunday :)

  37. these giraffes are wonderful! thanks so much for sharing on Craft Schooling Sunday, great to have you every week.

  38. Mama Syder says:

    They are fabulous! The way you made the legs & neck is what we used to do with our chewing gum wrappers as teenagers. It would be a competition to see who could make the longest…you triggered a great memory for me x

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Mama Syder – aaah how lovely! Pleased it brought back memories!! Funny what you get up to as kids!

  39. wow! Your creations never fail to astound me…. FANTASTIC! Thanks for linking up!

  40. Saw these year ago and still think they are awesome! :)

  41. yes if you like french cook le repas a domicile fan page

  42. Wow! this is such a cool idea. :)

  43. C bruton says:

    Love love love this!
    I have a 4 yr old son and 2 1/2 yr old daughter to try it with.
    One thing has anyone tried putting beads in the feet for added weight and ‘clipclop’ sounds?
    I will try and let everyone know. Xx

  44. Pinkoddy says:

    You have such the best ideas – and these look like they can be a lot of fun too.

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