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April 29, 2015

7 Easy-to-Make Bookmarks Perfect for Gift-Giving

By Genia Connell
Grades PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5

    As class sizes grow and budgets shrink, I'm always on the lookout for inexpensive ways to celebrate holidays with my students. This year, I may have found the most inexpensive, yet adorable gift yet for Mother's Day: a collection of bookmarks any mom, aunt, or grandmother would cherish. Follow the directions below to make any of these bookmarks for just pennies apiece. They also make great gifts for parent volunteers and even for your students!

     

     

     

    1. The Easiest Gift Ever: Paperclips + Anything = Bookmarks!

    If you have paperclips and a hot glue gun, all you need is something to glue on top of the paperclip and you have an instant, budget friendly, gift-worthy bookmark. Think about using buttons, colorful gems, flowers, or anything else you might find in bulk at the craft or dollar store. While I let my students pick their toppers and coordinating paperclips, I always keep them far away from the hot glue — a lesson learned years ago, the hard way. 

    paperclip bookmarkspaperclip bookmarks

    paperclip bookmarkspaperclip bookmarks

    paperclip bookmarkspaperclip bookmarks


     

    2. Jumbo Paperclip Bookmarks

    These 4-inch, jumbo metallic paperclips by Baumgartens make fun bookmarks with just a little ribbon added on top. I have found these super-sized paperclips at Walmart and Target, but the best prices can usually be found via an online search. 

    Jumbo paperclip bookmarks

     


     

    3. Kids "Just Hanging Around" Bookmarks

    Just Hanging Around Bookmarks

    These bookmarks make great gifts for parents, but my class and I decided doubles were in order so the kids could have their very own!

    To make these bookmarks:

    1. Take pictures of students posing against a solid background.

    2. Print the pictures on cardstock. I used the 5 x 7 option to print, putting two images on each sheet of paper.
    3. Cut out the student images, discard the backgrounds, and laminate.
    4. Punch a hole where each student's hands come together, or just one hand if that's the pose. 
    5. Add a tassel. 

    Tip: if your students are younger like mine, leave some extra paper around their hands so you have enough space to punch a hole. 

     


     

    4. Wordle Bookmarks

    My third graders love to make Wordles, and they are easy to print and cut into the perfect Mother's Day bookmark. 

    Wordle bookmarks

    To turn a Wordle into a bookmark:

    1. Have students think of 5 to 10 words that describe their mom. Type them into the create box, then click on the "Go" button.

    Wordle bookmarks

     
    2. Under the "Layout" tab, click on "Horizontal." 

    Wordle bookmarks

     
    3. Click the "Save as PNG" in the bottom right corner.

     

    4. Copy the saved image into a Word document, then resize to bookmark size by dragging the image's corners inward. Print on cardstock and cut to bookmark size.

     

    Wordle bookmarks

    Tip: Don't worry about all of the bookmarks being the same size. In my class, students sized them all differently and they looked great once they were done. 


     

    5. Paint Strip Book Marks

    There is something about the rainbow of colors and decorating possibilities that call me to the paint department of any home or hardware store, however, the teacher in me comes out when I start thinking of the infinite uses for the classroom! It turns out, paint swatches are an inexpensive, colorful way to make beautiful bookmarks. 

    Before

    After

    Paint strip bookmarks

    Easy to work with materials for the paint swatch bookmarks include:

    • Hole punches

    • Rubber stamps and ink

    • Stickers

    • Gel pens

    • Assorted ribbon or bookmark tassels

    For more creative crafting with paint strips, including bookmarks, please check out fellow blogger Lindsey Petlak's A Plethora of Paint Swatch Crafts.


     

    6. Silhouette Bookmarks

    silhouette bookmarks

    These silhouettes were made using the Adobe program, Photoshop Elements. I created them using the 30-day free trial, but there is educator pricing available for those who want to purchase. 

    1. Take a picture of your students standing sideways against a light backdrop. I used my interactive whiteboard.

    2. In the "Edit" menu, open your photo with PrintShop Elements. 

     how to make a silhouette out of a photo

    3. To create the silhouettes, I followed the easy, step-by-step directions I found on crafter Amy Bell's Positively Splendid blog to erase the background image and fill the face in with a solid color. 

    how to make a silhouette out of a photo

    4. Save the silhouette as a JPEG, and insert into a Word document for easy printing. I printed them on cardstock to make them sturdy enough for a bookmark. 

    how to make a silhouette out of a photo

    5. As a final step, students glued their silhouette onto a piece of colored cardstock and added embellishments from the dollar store to decorate their bookmarks.
     

    Tip: You can size your silhouettes as large or small as you like. They would also look great in a small picture frame. 

     

     

    7. Coupons and Bookmarks in One!

    Who doesn't love getting a coupon from someone promising to do the dishes or carry in the groceries on demand? My class loved coming up with a bouquet of bookmarks to give to their mom's on Mother's Day.

    Easy to make bookmarks for Mother's DayEasy to make bookmarks for Mother's Day

    Easy to make bookmarks for Mother's DayEasy to make bookmarks for Mother's Day

    Follow the directions on the free Scholastic Mother's Day Basket printable below to have your students create adorable bookmark coupons for their moms. 

    Free Scholastic Printable for Mother's Day

     

    For more ideas for easy-to-make gifts, visit my previous posts:

     

    Thanks so much for taking the time to read. I'd love to hear from you in the comment section below! 

    As class sizes grow and budgets shrink, I'm always on the lookout for inexpensive ways to celebrate holidays with my students. This year, I may have found the most inexpensive, yet adorable gift yet for Mother's Day: a collection of bookmarks any mom, aunt, or grandmother would cherish. Follow the directions below to make any of these bookmarks for just pennies apiece. They also make great gifts for parent volunteers and even for your students!

     

     

     

    1. The Easiest Gift Ever: Paperclips + Anything = Bookmarks!

    If you have paperclips and a hot glue gun, all you need is something to glue on top of the paperclip and you have an instant, budget friendly, gift-worthy bookmark. Think about using buttons, colorful gems, flowers, or anything else you might find in bulk at the craft or dollar store. While I let my students pick their toppers and coordinating paperclips, I always keep them far away from the hot glue — a lesson learned years ago, the hard way. 

    paperclip bookmarkspaperclip bookmarks

    paperclip bookmarkspaperclip bookmarks

    paperclip bookmarkspaperclip bookmarks


     

    2. Jumbo Paperclip Bookmarks

    These 4-inch, jumbo metallic paperclips by Baumgartens make fun bookmarks with just a little ribbon added on top. I have found these super-sized paperclips at Walmart and Target, but the best prices can usually be found via an online search. 

    Jumbo paperclip bookmarks

     


     

    3. Kids "Just Hanging Around" Bookmarks

    Just Hanging Around Bookmarks

    These bookmarks make great gifts for parents, but my class and I decided doubles were in order so the kids could have their very own!

    To make these bookmarks:

    1. Take pictures of students posing against a solid background.

    2. Print the pictures on cardstock. I used the 5 x 7 option to print, putting two images on each sheet of paper.
    3. Cut out the student images, discard the backgrounds, and laminate.
    4. Punch a hole where each student's hands come together, or just one hand if that's the pose. 
    5. Add a tassel. 

    Tip: if your students are younger like mine, leave some extra paper around their hands so you have enough space to punch a hole. 

     


     

    4. Wordle Bookmarks

    My third graders love to make Wordles, and they are easy to print and cut into the perfect Mother's Day bookmark. 

    Wordle bookmarks

    To turn a Wordle into a bookmark:

    1. Have students think of 5 to 10 words that describe their mom. Type them into the create box, then click on the "Go" button.

    Wordle bookmarks

     
    2. Under the "Layout" tab, click on "Horizontal." 

    Wordle bookmarks

     
    3. Click the "Save as PNG" in the bottom right corner.

     

    4. Copy the saved image into a Word document, then resize to bookmark size by dragging the image's corners inward. Print on cardstock and cut to bookmark size.

     

    Wordle bookmarks

    Tip: Don't worry about all of the bookmarks being the same size. In my class, students sized them all differently and they looked great once they were done. 


     

    5. Paint Strip Book Marks

    There is something about the rainbow of colors and decorating possibilities that call me to the paint department of any home or hardware store, however, the teacher in me comes out when I start thinking of the infinite uses for the classroom! It turns out, paint swatches are an inexpensive, colorful way to make beautiful bookmarks. 

    Before

    After

    Paint strip bookmarks

    Easy to work with materials for the paint swatch bookmarks include:

    • Hole punches

    • Rubber stamps and ink

    • Stickers

    • Gel pens

    • Assorted ribbon or bookmark tassels

    For more creative crafting with paint strips, including bookmarks, please check out fellow blogger Lindsey Petlak's A Plethora of Paint Swatch Crafts.


     

    6. Silhouette Bookmarks

    silhouette bookmarks

    These silhouettes were made using the Adobe program, Photoshop Elements. I created them using the 30-day free trial, but there is educator pricing available for those who want to purchase. 

    1. Take a picture of your students standing sideways against a light backdrop. I used my interactive whiteboard.

    2. In the "Edit" menu, open your photo with PrintShop Elements. 

     how to make a silhouette out of a photo

    3. To create the silhouettes, I followed the easy, step-by-step directions I found on crafter Amy Bell's Positively Splendid blog to erase the background image and fill the face in with a solid color. 

    how to make a silhouette out of a photo

    4. Save the silhouette as a JPEG, and insert into a Word document for easy printing. I printed them on cardstock to make them sturdy enough for a bookmark. 

    how to make a silhouette out of a photo

    5. As a final step, students glued their silhouette onto a piece of colored cardstock and added embellishments from the dollar store to decorate their bookmarks.
     

    Tip: You can size your silhouettes as large or small as you like. They would also look great in a small picture frame. 

     

     

    7. Coupons and Bookmarks in One!

    Who doesn't love getting a coupon from someone promising to do the dishes or carry in the groceries on demand? My class loved coming up with a bouquet of bookmarks to give to their mom's on Mother's Day.

    Easy to make bookmarks for Mother's DayEasy to make bookmarks for Mother's Day

    Easy to make bookmarks for Mother's DayEasy to make bookmarks for Mother's Day

    Follow the directions on the free Scholastic Mother's Day Basket printable below to have your students create adorable bookmark coupons for their moms. 

    Free Scholastic Printable for Mother's Day

     

    For more ideas for easy-to-make gifts, visit my previous posts:

     

    Thanks so much for taking the time to read. I'd love to hear from you in the comment section below! 

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