Sometimes, it’s the simple things in life that bring kids the most joy – turning a cardboard box into a car, making a mask out of a paper plate, or doing some crafts with pipe cleaners.
Pipe cleaners are super versatile – all you need is a little bit of imagination (and maybe even some glue) to create a masterpiece.
If you’re looking for some inspiration for pipe cleaner crafts for kids in your class, we’ve got you covered.
Nature-inspired Pipe Cleaner Crafts
1. Pipe Cleaner Flowers
Twist various colored pipe cleaners to make flower petals and use green pipe cleaners for stems. They can be made into bouquets to display in the classroom or worn as rings.
2. Pipe Cleaner Butterflies
Twist two pipe cleaners together to form the wings of the butterfly and use a separate piece for the body.
Beads can be threaded on for added decoration.
3. Pipe Cleaner Spiders
For a creepy crawly spider, use black pipe cleaners for the body and legs, then add googly eyes.
These spiders can even be used as classroom Halloween decorations.
4. Pipe Cleaner Trees
To make cute little trees, use brown for the trunk and green for the leaves, or have your students get creative with autumnal colors.
5. Pipe Cleaner Rainbows
Bend multiple colors of pipe cleaners into an arc and attach them together to form a rainbow.
6. Pipe Cleaner Clouds
Twist white and light blue pipe cleaners together, then fluff them out to create a cloud-like appearance.
Why not hang them from the walls when they’re finished?
7. Pipe Cleaner Snowflakes
Use white or sparkly pipe cleaners to create intricate snowflake designs.
These are beautiful to make around the holiday season.
8. Pipe Cleaner Sun
Use yellow and orange pipe cleaners to create a radiant sun. Bend several yellow pipe cleaners into rays and attach them to a central circle.
9. Pipe Cleaner Moon And Stars
Shape silver or pale yellow pipe cleaners into crescent moons and twinkling stars.
These can be hung together as a mobile.
10. Pipe Cleaner Mushrooms
Use white pipe cleaners for the stalk and red with white-spotted pipe cleaners for the cap.
Pipe Cleaner Animal Crafts
In keeping with the nature theme, why not get your class to give these pipe cleaner animals a try?
The children might need to add their own sound effects, though!
1. Pipe Cleaner Lions
Use yellow pipe cleaners for the body and face and orange pipe cleaners to create a bushy mane.
2. Pipe Cleaner Snakes
Twist together two or more different colored pipe cleaners, adding googly eyes and a small piece of red felt for a tongue.
3. Pipe Cleaner Birds
Use colorful pipe cleaners for the body and wings, and add beads for the eyes.
4. Pipe Cleaner Jellyfish
Use a translucent or light-colored pipe cleaner for the bell-shaped body and attach longer pieces for the tentacles.
5. Pipe Cleaner Seahorses
Shape pipe cleaners into the distinct spiral tail and curved body of a seahorse. Add tiny beads for the eyes.
6. Pipe Cleaner Starfish
Create a five-pointed star and decorate it with tiny beads or sequins to give it an oceanic texture.
7. Pipe Cleaner Sharks
Pipe cleaner shark doo doo doo doo doo doo.
Craft a streamlined shark form using gray pipe cleaners. Add tiny white pieces for sharp teeth.
8. Pipe Cleaner Pigs
Pink pipe cleaners can be coiled to make the round body of a pig with a cute curly tail.
9. Pipe Cleaner Chickens
Use yellow for chicks and red for the comb on top of adult chickens.
10. Pipe Cleaner Sheep
Use white or black to make a round body, and add tiny pipe cleaner loops to create a woolly texture.
Or, you can create the outline with pipe cleaners and then glue on some cotton balls for a really fluffy effect.
11. Pipe Cleaner Owls
Twist brown and white pipe cleaners to create an owl with beads for eyes.
12. Pipe Cleaner Hedgehogs
Create the body with brown pipe cleaners and add spiky protrusions for the characteristic hedgehog quills.
13. Pipe Cleaner Cats And Dogs
Students can make a version of their very own cat or dog using pipe cleaners in shades of brown, black, cream, white, and orange. Don’t forget the whiskers!
14. Pipe Cleaner Elephants
Craft a hefty gray body and a long trunk. Use big flappy ears for added cuteness.
15. Pipe Cleaner Giraffes
Use yellow and brown pipe cleaners to craft its tall neck and spotted body. Add tiny pipe cleaner ossicones (horns) on top.
Fantasy And Magical Pipe Cleaner Crafts
Now it’s time to bring more imagination to the table with these fantastical creations:
1. Pipe Cleaner Dragons
Twist pipe cleaners to make a serpentine body, add wings, and use tiny beads for eyes.
You can even glue on some orange and red pipe cleaners so the dragon breathes fire!
2. Pipe Cleaner Crowns
If your students have always wanted to be a prince or a princess, now is their chance!
Twist gold or silver pipe cleaners into a crown shape, adding beads or sequins as jewels.
3. Pipe Cleaner Wands
Every fairy princess needs a wand!
Stick a star-shaped cutout at the end of a straightened pipe cleaner.
Kids can decorate the wand with beads and ribbons.
4. Pipe Cleaner Unicorns
Use pastel-colored and white pipe cleaners to create the shape of a magical unicorn.
Don’t forget to add the horn!
Seasonal Pipe Cleaner Crafts
Pipe cleaners are great for creating seasonal crafts, too – let’s take a look at some ideas.
1. Halloween Pipe Cleaner Crafts
Craft spiders, ghosts, monsters, or mini pumpkins with pipe cleaners and decorate the classroom with the student’s creepy creations.
Make snowflakes, reindeers, or candy canes. These can be used as ornaments for the classroom, too, and would look cute hanging from the tree.
If your students are feeling particularly adventurous, get them to craft a Santa from red and white pipe cleaners.
Kids can shape pipe cleaners into bunny ears or Easter eggs to celebrate this holiday.
4. Valentine’s Day
Your class can create pink and red hearts out of pipe cleaners to give to their best friends and family to show them how much they care.
Wearable Pipe Cleaner Crafts
These wearable pipe cleaner crafts are really upping the game.
Your students can parade down their very own catwalk to show off their creations when they’re finished.
1. Pipe Cleaner Neckties
Create a fun, wearable necktie by twisting colors together and shaping them into a tie form.
This is not recommended for young children, and it’s really important you supervise anyone making a necktie.
2. Pipe Cleaner Brooches
Craft shapes like hearts, stars, or animals, then attach a safety pin to the back so your students can proudly wear what they’ve made.
3. Pipe Cleaner Belts
Weave together multiple pipe cleaners to create a colorful belt.
See who can create the wackiest belt!
4. Pipe Cleaner Glasses
Kids can shape pipe cleaners into fun eyeglass frames. Add some crafty flair with beads or sequins.
5. Pipe Cleaner Hats
Get your students to create weird and wonderful hats using pipe cleaners in their favorite colors.
6. Pipe Cleaner Hair Accessories
Shape pipe cleaners into fun patterns and attach them to hair clips or headbands.
Pipe Cleaner Musical Instruments
Warning: Most of these musical instruments won’t make much sound!
1. Pipe Cleaner Guitars
Attach pipe cleaners tightly across a wide popsicle stick, allowing kids to strum them like a tiny guitar.
2. Pipe Cleaner Maracas
Fill small plastic containers with beads, seal them, attach popsicle handles, and decorate them with pipe cleaners.
Using yellow pipe cleaners, students can create their very own trumpet. Add buttons for extra decoration.
Pipe Cleaner Vehicles
See which of your students can make the coolest vehicle using pipe cleaners:
1. Pipe Cleaner Cars
Use buttons or beads for wheels and shape the body using pipe cleaners.
2. Pipe Cleaner Boats
Create the boat’s outline and use a small piece of paper as a sail.
3. Pipe Cleaner Airplanes
Twist pipe cleaners to form the body and wings, using beads as the plane’s front.
Pipe Cleaner Gifts
Children really love taking their creations home for their parents, so why not get them involved in making some pipe cleaner gifts?
1. Pipe Cleaner Bookmarks
Twist pipe cleaners into fun shapes or characters and attach them to a simple strip of cardboard.
2. Pipe Cleaner Picture Frames
Shape pipe cleaners into square or rectangular frames, decorating the edges with beads and patterns.
3. Pipe Cleaner Coasters
Create a circular shape with pipe cleaners and weave through them, making a colorful coaster.
4. Pipe Cleaner Vases
Wrap pipe cleaners around a jar or container to create a decorative vase that mom will love.
5. Pipe Cleaner Wall Art
Form pipe cleaners into shapes, letters, or designs and mount them onto canvas or cardboard to hang.
Educational Pipe Cleaner Crafts
Why not create something together that you can use in the classroom? These activities are perfect for preschoolers.
1. Pipe Cleaner Alphabet
Mold pipe cleaners into letters of the alphabet, helping children learn as they craft.
2. Pipe Cleaner Numbers
Similarly, form numbers using pipe cleaners, offering an interactive way for kids to learn numeracy.
3. Pipe Cleaner Shapes
Create basic geometric shapes like triangles, squares, and circles. This can be a fun way to teach young children about different shapes.
Playtime Accessories Made From Pipe Cleaners
1. Pipe Cleaner Doll Accessories
Craft tiny hats, glasses, or jewelry for dolls.
2. Pipe Cleaner Fishing Game
Attach a magnet to one end of a pipe cleaner fishing rod and create small pipe cleaner fish with paperclip or metallic elements for a fun, indoor fishing game.
Functional Pipe Cleaner Crafts For Kids
Let’s look at some practical items that can be created from pipe cleaners:
1. Pipe Cleaner Baskets
Weave pipe cleaners together to form a small basket, perfect for holding tiny treasures (or all of your other pipe cleaner creations!)
2. Pipe Cleaner Napkin Rings
Twist pipe cleaners into decorative rings for napkins at a classroom party.
3. Pipe Cleaner Door Hangers
Shape them into welcoming signs or friendly creatures to hang on doors.
4. Pipe Cleaner Pencil Toppers
Make tiny creatures, flowers, or shapes and attach them to the top of pencils.
Advanced Pipe Cleaner Crafts For Older Kids
A lot of the ideas above are pretty simple, but if you want to challenge your older students, try one of the below.
1. Pipe Cleaner Dream Catchers
Use a hoop and weave pipe cleaners through it in patterns. Dangle beads and feathers for a creative touch.
2. Pipe Cleaner Jewelry
Create bracelets, necklaces, or rings. Beads can be threaded onto the pipe cleaners to make them more ornamental.
3. Pipe Cleaner Sculptures
Challenge kids to build 3D sculptures of animals, objects, or abstract designs.
As you can see, pipe cleaners can be used for so many different crafts.
All you need is a bit of imagination and, well, a ton of pipe cleaners!
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