Introduction: Education Boy and Girl Learning Tool

About: I adore instructables and use it when I'm playing with ideas for my students (I'm a certified art teacher and the Art Director for a children's summer camp). I have found that it fuels my creative process as …
Greetings fellow education loving instuctavillians!  Today we will explore how to create a fun interactive learning tool for students to use to quiz themselves and each other and give a hands on learning activity to help them recall information later.

This instructable will guide you on how to create your own Education Boy & Girl to use as a learning tool in your classroom.  It does not stop there however!  I am giving you two different templates to use with children of various ages, so they can create their fellow learning superhero!

Recommended Project Age: K--12+

Subject Areas: The project can be used in: All & Cross Curriculum (more on this later)

Learning Objective: Creating an interactive tool (Using many states standards for Art, following directions, social skills, and more) to be used to teach a variety of subjects

Sit back relax and let your imagination go wild as you learn to created your own Educational Boy and Girl interactive tool!

Step 1: Materials Needed

We all know, even the the wealthiest of schools have budgets.  Keeping that in mind, this project can be created relatively cheaply or with materials already owned by the school.

Materials Needed:

Tag Board
Construction Paper (Various colors)
White Glue
Brass Fasteners
Hole Punch
Markers/Colored Pencils/Crayons/Sharpies/#1 Pencil
ziplock (or similar baggies) bags

Helpful but not necessary materials:

Smart Board or it's equivalent
Internet Connection

Other Materials That could be used to create the educational superhero:

Plastic sheets

Step 2: Templates

I have two different sets of templates.  The templates on this step are what you will see used in this instructable. At the end of this instructable you will find the second template that involves less cutting for younger students.

For the templates below I would recommend children in 2nd grade and up.

Each child creating a educational superhero will need their own copy of the template used.  I would recommend printing the template out and making copies on tag board.  Have students label their pieces with their initials and what each piece is before they cut them out. 

Give each student a ziplock baggie and a template.  One they have labeled their pieces they should cut all their parts out and place them inside their baggie.  This may take 30 mins or longer depending on your students age and small mortar skills.

Should you wish you could pre-cut templates out and have them laminated so students take a bag of shapes, this would cut down on time needed for the lesson.  This is more of a personal preference.  This lesson could be used as group work, independent work at a desk, part of a center, "filler"  Decided how the project is going to fit into your lesson and it may help you make a decision on how to handle your templates.

For the templates found at the end of this lesson, I would recommend printing them out on white tag board and having children color the pieces in.  These are more complete superheros using only three pieces to help hands that are still defining and building their small motor skills.

Step 3: Pick Out Your Constructon Paper Colors

Pick out your construction paper colors and begin cutting out the parts needed in your colors choice.

For younger children (4th grade and younger) I recommend them laying their templates down on the paper and tracing around them and having them cut the pieces out. Older children may be able to hold the template in place and cut around it, however it takes more skill than you realize and there is no reason at any age to not suggest drawing around the pattern first.

For children younger than second grade using the second templates have them cut out the template and color with the media of your choice.

Have them cut all the shapes first in their color choice before starting to put it together. 

Step 4: Hole Punch

Once you have all your shapes cut out of the color of your choice, take the body shape and the cape and hole punch through them both.  Go ahead and put a brass fastener through the hole to keep them together.

Step 5: Education Girl Head

If you are making a female character the directions for her head are different than the male version.

Take the hair cut out in your color choice, put glue on half of the head shape.

Step 6: Hole Punch the Hair

Lift up the bottom part of the face and hole punch through the hair.  You can do this before you glue on the head, I chose to do it after simply because I forgot to eyeball where the hole punch for the head should go.

Step 7: Brass Fasener

For the male version the hole punch in the hair and attaching it to the body and cape is not necessary. 

Take your body and head shape and open the brass fastener back up you will need to then take the body and cape already through the brass fastener and place it through the hole in education girls hair.  Then spread out the fastener.  Make sure to leave it loose enough that the parts can move easily.

For the male, you will glue the head on over the brass fastener.

Step 8: Arms & Legs

Take your arms and hand and glue them together, do the same with the leg and boot.  Then take the connected piece and glue them to the body of the female figure.

If you angle the glove and boot you can get a different body expression than gluing everything straight.  You can also play around with how they attach to the body.  Don't worry there is no right or wrong, just get them close to where they belong.

Step 9: Bottom of the Body

I am sure in the superhero world this part of the costume has a better name, but for this we will refer to it as the bottom of the body.  After cutting out the piece from the template into the color you want glue it to the bottom of the body shape.

Step 10: Utility Belt

Take the utility belt that you cut out from the template and glue it on top of both parts of the body.  The kids may choose to cut this smaller than the template, and that is ok. 

There are small ovals you can cut to make the utility belt look more intense, but these are hard for young kids to cut.  They can draw that on later and is what I would recommend for elementary age children.

Step 11: Super Mask and Face Details

Take your mask or cowl and glue it onto the face.  The kids can cut off the triangle point for a nose if the choose for a softer more rounded look.  It's a personal choice.

Take the emblem and paste it to the front of the superheros body.  (This is an optional piece, depending on what you are using your education girl or guy for)

Take a Sharpie (or other writing tool) and draw on the eyes and mouth.  You can add other details if you like.

Step 12: Last of the Details

Add any remaining detail that you like

The superhero's I've shown have been "Math Man and Math Girl"

The math problems were written on their bellies the cape swings out to find the answer.

Virtually any subject can be put on the belly of the superhero and the answer on the cape.  Math, English, phonics, science, vocab, question and answers and the list goes on.

Step 13: Younger Kid Templates

For smaller hands I've made templates for you that involve cutting out a head, body and cape.  You would put these together in the same manner as the multi pieces hero.

I would love to see what you and your students make and any ideas you have using the education hero!

Step 14: Kids Examples

Here are some examples of completed Education Boy & Education Girl sent to me by fellow teacher.  If you created this project please post the pictures or send them to me I get very tickled to see what kids come up with!

Step 15: PoofRabbit's Tips and Tricks

I have had a lot of great feedback on this project and I wanted to share what I've learned and what thoughts I was given in having children create their own Math Boy or Math Girl.

Ziplocks are a lifesaver, have kids put their pieces inside as they create them so they do not get lost.

Have children initial their parts (on the back) as they create their pieces.

It's best to have kids draw out the pieces using the templates on the paper, having them write their name or initials on those pieces, then cut them out.

If you are wanting to use this project but need it to be done quickly print out the template on card stock (you will need two each template)  The kids can then color the template using crayons, markers, and/or colored pencils. 

Have examples to show the children, you can you see here or create your own.

Keep an open mind, kids like to be creative, do no hinder that process.  Let them explore the possibilities and they will have even more fun creating their characters.

Many thanks to all those who have written me and shared projects!  Keep them coming!
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