Instructables
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My first grader was given the assignment of making a desert diorama. It was one of several land form dioramas they could choose from. This Instructable documents the process using things we had lying around the house.

Items Needed:
Shoe Box
Elmers Glue
Box Cutter
Sky Blue Spray Paint
Desert Camoflage Spray Paint
Red Model Paint
Brown Model Paint
Black Model Paint
Model Paint Thinner
1/2" Foam Sheet Insulation (About 4 square feet worth)
Sharpie Marker
Rubber Snake
Flathead Screw Driver
Green Scrub Pad
Paper Plate
Model Paint Brush
Hot Glue Gun and Glue Sticks
Small Clamps
Spare Cardboard Box
Rocks
Train Model Tree Material
 
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Step 1: Cut shoe box.

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Cut the front of the shoe box and fold the flaps back into the box. This opens the front of the box for better viewing.

Next, use a hot glue gun or plain old Elmers glue and some clamps to hold the flaps tight during drying. Do this for both sides.

Step 2: The inner lining.

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Cut some pieces of cardboard to line the inner walls of the shoe box. This gives it a nice smooth even appearance. Again, glue these liners and clamp til dry. We used two pieces to make it the whole way around the inner sides.

Step 3: Line the bottom of the box.

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Cut a half inch think piece of insulation to fit the interior of the box. Glue and press to attach firmly.

Step 4: Assemble rock formations.

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Glue insulation scraps together in a stacked way. Allow to dry over night. When the glue has dried, trim the formation with a box cutter or other blade. I basically try to trim all of the right angles and overlaps.
Robotrix7 years ago
Yeah not bad but needs some D&D miniatures. : P It looks great! and it's good to see that you didn't just do the whole project for your 1st grader, too. Very nice piece.
rt3tech (author)  Robotrix7 years ago
I have a whole army of clicky-base battlemechs, tanks and infantry I could have used, but I thought it might be over the top! lol I documented the whole thing to prove to the teacher that my kid did participate.
You know battlemechs are one of the snake's few natural predators.
...but only in MGS 4...
lemonie7 years ago
I like the rocks
rt3tech (author)  lemonie7 years ago
They were a bargain: free quartz, just lying around.
PetervG7 years ago
I made a huge Mi'kmaq one before. I actually went out into a forest off the side of a high way to get things that they were actually made of. I got birch bark (from a dead tree), moss, twigs and stuff. It's quite fun. Then I burned it in the snow.
rt3tech (author)  PetervG7 years ago
It is fun to see something come to life as you add the layers of detail! I've made many other terrain pieces for a Battletech war game. Hills, lakes, buildings from office machine parts, trees made from bailing wire etc. Then blowing your opponent away on a giant 3D battlefield. I mean if you're into that sort of thing.
HamO7 years ago
Most excellent, well done. Thanks for sharing.
rt3tech (author)  HamO7 years ago
Thanks! I had fun making it with my 1st grader. :)
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