Teaching bookmaking to children

I’ve probably mentioned before that I’m totally addicted to Pinterest. I have over 200 boards. It’s a problem. Is it really? Yes. And no.

Most of my boards are (surprise!) bookbinding-related. As a teaching artist, I have a strong interest in teaching bookmaking to children. I’ve been collecting my findings on a Pinterest board specific to the topic:

Pinterest screenshot

While searching for online resources about teaching kids, I discovered Clare Seccombe, a teacher from England. She loves to use mini books in the classroom and has many tutorials listed on her website. She has done a great job of adapting the simple mini book form for use with varied subject matter.

Another advocate of teaching bookmaking to kids is Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord. She offers tips for both teachers and families on how to get children involved in the book arts. Her blog is a great inspirational resource and she often talks about her work with children. And if that’s not enough, she also has a number of publications available – they are available for purchase from her Etsy shop. And there’s more…you can download (for free!) a copy of Susan’s Recycled Materials for Making Books on Lulu.

Cathy Miranker and Susie Peyton of the website Bookmaking with Kids have the following to say about making books with kids:

A book made by hand is the perfect meeting place for artistic expression and emerging literacy. Bookmaking unlocks something amazing in kids—creativity, enthusiasm, a zest for learning, concentration, patience, imagination and lots of talent. It lets kids forge a personal connection to reading, to writing, to making art.

Their website is a treasure! They blog about book arts projects that are appropriate for specific age ranges/grade levels. They also post about different book structures that often include tutorials or downloadable instructions. They are very generous with their knowledge!

Paul Johnson has long had the mission of promoting writing and visual communication skills though the book arts and has written a number of books about teaching bookmaking to children, including Get Writing!: Creative Book-Making Projects for Children and Literacy Through the Book Arts. He’s got mad pop-up skills and he often uses them in his work with kids – it’s very engaging.

Lastly, Karen Cox wrote a very helpful blog post about bookbinding with pre-K children on the PreKinders website. It has suggestions for what features to include when making books, along with ideas for basics supplies and construction methods.

If you’ve found anything that’s been useful in teaching bookmaking to kids (books, websites, etc.), please let me know by leaving a comment below – I’d love to hear from you!

One Response to “Teaching bookmaking to children”

By Clare - 20 October 2014 Reply

Thanks for the mention!


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