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.
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.
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.
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!
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)!