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What you’ll need...

  • Paper – either colourful (such as old wrapping paper) or paper that you have painted with your own design. The longer the sheets the better, A4 length minimum. You may wish to have two different colours or designs

  • Scissors

  • Ruler

  • Pencil

  • Blu Tack

  • Glue stick

  • Two sticks – these could be wooden kebab sticks or two strong sticks you can find outside in the garden or on your daily walk

  • Thread or fine string

  • Sellotape

  • A bottle cap or something else recycled to make into a face

Suitable for ages 5-11 (you may need adult supervision for any cutting)

Time guideline: 45 minutes


Begin by cutting your paper into long thin strips. Use a ruler and pencil to mark out the strips first (2cm is a good width) to make sure they are even. Cut out several strips.


Using the glue stick, glue one end of two paper strips together at a right angle.


Now start to fold one strip over the other in turn, ensuring you keep each fold nice and neat. This will start to form a square where the two strips fold over. You should end up with a tight square that when you pull either end, pulls out into a concertina.

Make several of these concertinas with your other strips. The more you make, the longer your caterpillar will be. When you have enough to make your caterpillaras long as you want it, stick them together using the glue stick


Next, you will need your kebab sticks, thread and ball of Blu Tack or a rubber. At each end of your caterpillar concertina, carefully pierce a hole at the top of one of the folds. Do this safely with the sharp end of your kebab stick, or a skewer (you may need an adult to help you). Put the Blu Tack on one side of the fold and pierce through into the fold into the Blu Tack. Thread your cotton through the hole and tie it securely in a knot. Leave about 30cm of thread and cut. Do this at both ends.


Now tie the other ends of your threads to one end of a kebab stick each. Lift up your puppet using the sticks and move them up and down to see how it moves. You may find you need to change the length of the strings or move the position they are tied in to get the best effect – you want to be able to make your creepy crawly wiggle!


When you are happy with the way your puppet moves, secure the string on the sticks with sellotape. Now you are free to decorate your puppet however you would like. You can add a face – we've used a bottle top, but you can use a piece of card, for example – legs, feelers, a floaty tail, or make it glitter! Experiment with different papers and different ways of stringing the puppet to change the way it moves.

You can try making a really big version of of your puppet by using wider strips of paper, or a really miniature one using smaller strips. You can try using plaited material instead of paper to give a different effect. You can also try a different way of animating it, such as sticking the puppet on the end of two sticks instead of hanging it from them. Once you're happy with your puppet, try filming an animation of it on a phone or tablet.

What I have learned...

  • How to follow instructions and engineer your puppet to move as you would like it to DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY

  • How to use different decorative effects to personalise your puppet ART AND DESIGN

  • How to follow and comprehend instructions LITERACY

This activity is this week's ‘challenge of the week’, so don’t forget to take a picture or short video of your creepy crawlies and share with us on social media – we would love to see what you’ve created! #kuuoliving

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