To celebrate Independence Day, kids can make paper placemats that look like an American flag or a sky full of fireworks, or decorate the placemats with patriotic paper dolls.
● Red, white, and blue construction paper
● Clear contact paper
● Crayons or markers
● Regular or star-shaped hole punch (optional)
● Glitter (optional)
● Cardstock and color printer (optional)
Make an American Flag Placemat
- Cut the white sheet of paper into six strips, each the length of the paper and about 2/3 inch wide.
- Glue the white strips to the sheet of red paper, spacing them evenly.
- Cut a piece of blue paper about 5 inches square. Glue the blue square over the upper left corner of the red and white stripes.
- Draw white stars on the blue square using crayon, or punch stars out of white paper using a round or star-shaped hole punch and then glue them to the blue square. If making all 50 stars seems daunting, make a simpler Betsy Ross style flag with 13 stars in a circle.
Make a Patriotic People Placemat
- Visit the Making Friends website to download and print free paper dolls. Choose the “outline” dolls if you have a black and white printer or want to color your own dolls, or choose the color dolls to print pre-colored people in a variety of ethnic shades.
- Print the dolls, cut them out, and color them if desired. You may want to put several people on each placemat, or just one doll to personalize the placemat for a particular family member or guest.
- Print and cut out hair for the dolls from the same website and glue it to the paper people.
- Print the patriotic clothes page for the dolls. If you don’t have a color printer, print the page in black and white and then color the clothes using markers or crayons. Cut out the red, white, and blue clothes and glue them to the dolls.
- Glue the dolls to a piece of construction paper.
- Write a name on each placemat if desired.
Make a Fireworks Placemat
- Start with a piece of dark blue paper.
- Draw lines of glue in a starburst pattern, going out from the center.
- Write the guest’s name with glue, if desired.
- Sprinkle glitter over the glue.
- Let the glue dry, then shake off the excess glitter.
Once the kids have completed making as many Fourth of July placemats as they need, cover each placemat with clear contact paper to laminate it and make it more waterproof. This will help the placemats last all through the holiday, or even keep them ready to go for next year.