Kid’s craft idea: Make a Read & Grow Bookworm

I remember reading for hours & hours during the summer when I was a kid (that is, when I wasn’t making something). My daughter spent her summer hours the same way, and visits to the library were a highlight of summer days. These memories are one reason why I adore Kathleen George’s Read & Grow Bookworm. Not only will kids have a blast making this colorful bookworm, but every time they read a book, they add another ball. By summer’s end, who knows how long the Read & Grow Bookworm will be! It’s a fun way to encourage reading, and give the kids a head start for the new school year.

A cute kid's craft that encourages reading, too. Every time a child finishes a book, he or she adds another ball to the Bookworm.

Read & Grow Bookworm by Kathleen George

To make a Read & Grow Bookworm, you’ll need:

  • STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam:
    • 3” ball (head)
    • 2-1/2” balls, one for each book read
    • ¾”, two for antennae
    • Scrap piece
  • Acrylic craft paints in assorted colors
  • Chenille stems, at least three and more for additional books
  • Wiggle eyes, ¾”, two
  • Pompom, ½” in pink
  • Felt scraps
  • Top hat, 2” (you’ll find one in the doll making aisle)
  • Thick, white craft glue
  • Tools needed: Scissors; wood skewers; medium flat paintbrush; ruler; wire knippers

To make a Read & Grow Bookworm:

1. Insert a wood skewer into each foam ball and use this as a handle while painting. Paint balls in your favorite colors, and then insert the wood skewers into a scrap of STYROFOAM Brand Foam while the paint dries.

How to build a Read & Grow Bookworm. Tutorial on

Use chenille stems to form a “coupling system” to connect the balls.

2. You’ll build your bookworm using links made from chenille stems:

  • Cut chenille stems into 1-1/2” lengths
  • Bend each piece to form a “U”
  • Dip the ends of one U into the glue
  • Insert into the back of the head, leaving a small loop

3. To add more balls:

  • Thread a second U through the loop behind the head
  • Dip ends into glue, and insert the U into a 2-1/2” ball
  • Repeat to add more balls.

4. Glue wiggle eyes and pompom nose onto face. Cut a mouth from a scrap of felt, and glue to face.

Here's a kid's craft that encourages reading, too -- a Read & Grow Bookworm!

Let the kids customize their bookworm with different colors of paint and other embellishments — glitter, sequins, etc.

5. Glue hat to top of head.

6. Cut two, 4″ chenille stem lengths. Insert and glue one end of each stem in a 3/4″ ball. Insert stems into head on either side of the hat for antennae.

7. See how long you can make your bookworm by adding a new ball every time you read a book!

A cute kid's craft that encourages reading, too. Every time a child finishes a book, he or she adds another ball to the Bookworm.

Reading + Crafting = Total Win!

Our library always has a summer reading program, and that’s a lot of fun, too. Does your library have a summer reading program? Are you participating in it?

Happy crafting (and summer reading)!


This entry was posted in Craft Tutorial, Kid's Crafts and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Kid’s craft idea: Make a Read & Grow Bookworm

  1. LisaM6 says:

    I think he is great. Now if the daughter would only read for me. This might make an incentive for her to read. hmmmm What a fun project.

    • Sharon says:

      I love this project, too, Lisa. Let me know what your daughter things when you show it to her — fingers crossed that she likes it! Sharon

  2. Angie says:

    How fun! This is a great way to have your child or grandchild involved in crafts. When my son was in Kindergarten, the teacher made a similar caterpillar to count the first 100 days of school. It was an even with a party for all the children. Using tights or pantihose is another great idea to recycle throw-away items into crafting. These are exciting crafts for you and your kids!

    • Sharon says:

      Thank you, Angie. I’m for any craft or program that encourages reading, and/or counting. Start early, make it fun, and they’re off to a great start. Glad you came by today. Sharon

  3. LOVE this idea!! Definitely going to make one for Jenna! I am thinking that I might make one with numbers too so that she can play and learn!
    Our library doesn’t offer a summer reading program but the racetrack does and Jenna is participating in that. She love to go to the track and is having fun with this program! At the end of the summer she gets to ride in a race car if she completes the program requirements! She is so excited for that!
    Stay cool and create!!

    • Sharon says:

      Wow, now that’s an exciting reading program! Kudos to the racetrack, too, for encouraging kids to read. Let us all know when she takes her ride, and send a photo! You stay cool, too. Happy crafting! Sharon

  4. Anne Haun says:

    How cute is this?? My grandson would love for me to make one.

    • Sharon says:

      Wonderful! I hope you DIY it for him, and then get to spend time reading together. That would be the best! Thanks for stopping in. Sharon

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s