Have you got a stash of paper plates in your classroom cabinet?
We absolutely love using paper plates for holiday crafts. There’s something so satisfying about using a frugal craft material and making it into something fantastic.
Perhaps one reason why we love using paper plates for holiday crafts is that the plate does a lot of the hard work for you. Their curved edges and circular dimensions make those tricky cutting jobs so much easier. Also, their surface is easy to draw and paint on and stick things to. What is there not to love?
We’ve searched for ideas we think you and your students will love. We’ve also considered how much time you have and how doable the activity ideas are.
Here are our top holiday craft picks…
Classroom Christmas Tree
This Christmas craft idea checks off many of the boxes because it can be as simple or complicated as you choose. It relies on class teamwork, creates a great classroom display, and saves trees!
You will need:
- paper plates (at least one for each student, 28 plates work well)
- green, blue, red, and yellow poster paint
- eco-friendly glitter or sparkly sequins
- ornaments and other holiday decorations
- a star.
Paper Plate Wreath
Once your students have got the hang of the folding and sticking process, this holiday craft idea provides a relaxing activity for them. It takes a little bit of prep work from an adult, but it’s well worth it.
- Pre-cut the inner circle of the paper plate using a craft knife.
- Pre-cut the strips for your students using a paper cutter.
- Model for your students how to fold the paper strips back onto themselves and secure the tips with glue.
- Model for your students how to cut out the triangle tips. Make sure the glue is dry before you cut.
This paper plate wreath is a perfect gift for your students to take home or give to a grandparent. If you are looking for a Christmas card idea to compliment this paper plate wreath, read our blog 5 Crafty Christmas Card Ideas.
Whether your students are looking for a new accessory or a hanging storage solution, this is the craft idea with purpose. This activity is an excellent way for your students to develop their fine motor skills and learn the blanket stitch.
The only tricky part of this craft idea is the hole punching. It’s a job for an adult helper.
Top tip: use double-sided sticky tape to secure the two paper plates together before you begin punching holes.
Paper Plate Reindeer
This holiday craft idea is super simple and guarantees success for younger students.
You will need:
- 2 x brown paper plates
- brown paper
- googly eyes
- red felt
- double-sided sticky tape.
Lace Plate Christmas Tree
These lace plate Christmas trees help develop fine motor skills and mathematical thinking, too! Check out how this circle can be cut into thirds (or near enough) to create something fabulous!
Follow these simple steps over a few days:
- Paint the plates green, allow them to dry, and cut them into thirds.
- Make six slits along the rim of each third.
- Lace ribbon through the slits and secure at each end with a simple knot.
- Stack and stick the triangles together using double-sided sticky tape.
- Add a brown trunk made from cardstock or a small piece of a paper plate and a few other decorations.
Holiday Craft Characters
Younger students will love to get creative with different craft materials in order to create these adorable characters.
This idea is super adaptable and allows your students to work independently. Make your life even easier by asking your students to design their holiday characters and bring in craft materials from home. Ensure that you have some materials ready to go for those students who cannot contribute from home.
Ho Ho Ho Paper Plate Santa
This guy is pretty important when we are writing about all things Christmas. If you are looking for a Christmas craft that is quick, easy, and effective, this is for you. There is not much to explain here, but it seems like a lot of fun.
We hope that one or two of these ideas suit you and your class!
Now, go add paper plates to your grocery list and turn the ultimate economical craft material into something fabulous!