Italy is a fascinating and beautiful country. And this Italy craft for kids would make the perfect addition to any lesson at home or in the classroom…or just something to make for the pure fun of it. The added bonus with this craft is that placing the tissue paper squares are also a great fine motor activity. (Stick around, and I’ll tell you more about that from my occupational therapist perspective.)
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Fun Facts About Italy
- The capital of Italy is Rome, which is over 2000 years old.
- Italy’s flag is green, white and red, which represents hope, faith and charity.
- There is a famous Trevi fountain that tourists throw coins into for a special wish. It brings in more than $1 million every year, which is given to charity.
- Pinocchio was first published in an Italian newspaper.
- One of the sites of Italy is the Sistine Chapel where Michelangelo painted the ceiling in 1512. More than 20,000 people visit every day.
- Christopher Columbus was Italian.
- Pizza was invented in Naples, Italy.
*To learn more about Italy (there’s so much to know!), check out this article from Kids World Travel Guide.
SUPPLIES FROM THE BAG
- Paper plate (9-inch coated)
- Glue stick
- Black construction paper
- Tissue paper squares (red, white and green)
- Italy craft template
This craft takes just a few basic supplies, including tissue paper squares. This is just one of the things from our master list of supplies that we keep in our kids’ craft bag. And we use this one set of supplies make all of the amazing and fun crafts that you see on this site and in our shop. We do this so that crafting with your kids can be fun again…and not just a chore. Keep it simple. Fill your bag and craft along!
Learn About Italy with a Good Book
Making this craft on its own is great fun, but it would be even better turned into a lesson about Italy for kids using one of these books…
How to Make this Italy Craft
Step 1: Decorate a Plate
- Get out your pre-cut tissue paper squares that have been cut into approximately 1 inch squares. Since the colors of the flag for Italy are red, white and green, those are the colors that we have picked. But you can choose any colors that you would like.
- Use your glue stick to apply the tissue paper squares to the bottom of your paper plate. This can be done in a random pattern or something more organized, like these stripes that mimic the Italian flag.
This craft, with all of the little tissue paper pieces, is amazing for working on those fine motor skills. Just encourage your child to “pinch” each piece, rather than picking up a handful at a time. Not only is it good for fine motor practice, it’s also excellent for improving crossing midline.
Little ones often struggle with the skill of crossing midline, and we don’t even realize it. This is when one side of the body moves into the space of the other side, crossing over that invisible middle line. For the purposes of this article, we are referring to the line that runs vertically down the center of the body. The repetitive activity of placing the tissue paper squares is the perfect opportunity to practice this much needed skill.
Simply place the tissue paper squares opposite the hand the your child most often favors. Then encourage him/her to reach across the body to pick up the pieces one at a time in order to place them on the craft. You may notice that your child wants to use the hand closest to the squares and then pass it to the other hand. Gently encourage the reaching across, even holding the hand that you do not want them to use for this activity. (Of course, do not create agitation.)
You will be surprised how truly challenging this is for some kids. But it’s worth it to practice this skill. Crossing midline is foundational to so many basic functions, especially school activities like writing, reading and using scissors. If you’d like to learn more about crossing midline, check out this article from Develop Learn Grow.
Step 2: Use the Italy Craft Template
- Download and print the Italy craft template.
- Choose from one of the four silhouettes (bowl of pasta, leaning tower of Pisa, the Parthanon, or a gondola).
- Use the template to cut the silhouette from black construction paper (or another color if you prefer)
*You can also choose to draw and cut out a symbol of Italy of your own making.
Step 3: Add the Silhouette
- Now that your plate is decorated and your silhouette is cut out, all we need to do it put it on place.
- Use your glue stick to attach the Italy cut out to the center of the plate.
- Press and hold for a minute to give the glue time to take hold.
Now that you know how to make this Italy craft, make it your own. Get creative with the tissue paper pattern. Or draw your own silhouette, once you’ve learned a little about Italy, to add to your craft. Maybe you want to make the Trevi fountain, or part of Michelango’s painting at the Sistine Chapel, or a pizza…whatever you can think of! The only limit is your imagination.