Paper Pumpkin

I found this wonderful idea on Artists Helping Children. I made a couple of modifications to the instructions in order to reduce the time needed to make it and thought I'd share those hints with you.

The supplies you'll need are as follows:
- a paper towel or toilet paper roll
- various fall colors of construction paper. You'll need one full-sized sheet for the outside color.
For tools, you'll need scissors and glue (thick white glue or glue sticks.)

Begin by cutting down the tube to the size you'd like. My example is about 2 1/2" tall. The taller the tube, the taller the pumpkin, and vice-versa.

Next, cut a strip of construction paper that will fit the tube. Wrap and glue in place.

Cut 4 tabs of construction paper about 3/4" x 6" (6" = the circumference of the tube.) These can be any color as they won't be seen on the completed project.

Cut the full-sized sheet of construction paper into narrow strips. In my example, I cut the strips so that they were 8 1/2" long. If you cut them longways, you will have a bigger pumpkin.

Now, arrange the strips into a section as wide as the 6" tabs. These don't have to be neat and can overlap.

Glue one of the tabs onto the strips at the end, covering the whole length of the tab. When the glue has set so that the strips are movable, flip them over and glue another tab on the opposite side of the first. Repeat this process at the opposite end of the strips.

If you're doing this for a class project, this is a good time to have your students put their name on it. If they put their name near one end of the strips, it will be on the bottom but still be visible. This end will be the bottom.

On one end only, cut the tab into 4 sections. It won't be a problem if some the the strips need to be trimmed in order to separate the sections.

Now, roll the "top" or uncut end into a circle that will fit inside the end of the tube.

Slip the tab for the rolled strips inside the tube and glue in place. Give this just a minute to dry/set.

Next, take one of the 4 sections on the other end of the strips and loop them up to the opposite end of the tube. Tuck the tab inside the tube and glue in place. For this portion of the project, it helps to position your thumb through the open end of the tube to hold down the glued ends while they set.

Repeat with the other 3 sections until you have a rounded pumpkin. If any of the strips are overlapped in an awkward manner, take a moment to arrange them properly.

Now cut a section of brown construction paper about 8" by 6" and roll it into a tube just slightly smaller than the center of the pumpkin. Crumple one end and twist. This will make the stem. Glue the stem into the top end of the pumpkin.

Cut a piece of green construction paper into the shape of a leaf. Pinch one end together to form a stem. Slide the stem of the leaf into the top of the pumpkin next to the brown stem and glue in place.

HINT: I thought I would really like the pumpkin done in the plaid print. However, since the backside of the paper was white, the print was sort of lost in the finished project. If you want to go fancier than a solid color, I suggest you find a two-sided print.

HINT 2: The original instructions indicate to apply the strips individually. This works very well for the final product, but takes much more time, and the glue tends to get messy with all the handling.

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