Introduction: Let's Make a Flipbook

About: Drew Charter School believes that making is an essential part of education.

Today we're going to make a flipbook. Flipbooks are a great introduction to animation and a great was to flex your drawing skills! You can find all of the supplies for this in our makerspace if you visit, and we've also made this tutorial for you to use materials you probably have at home. This project can be done by students of all ages, and incorporates many skills including story telling, drawing, and using scissors that are great for young learners.

Let's get started making a flipbook!


For this project you'll need:

  • Paper- Any kind of paper works. For this tutorial we're using letter sized paper.
  • Pen or Pencil
  • Rubber bands, binder clip, tape or glue- to bind the edge of your flip book. For this tutorial I used a binder clip. Use what you have at home!
  • Ruler or straightedge
  • Scissors


  • markers- add some color to your flip book
  • a computer or phone to research sprites
  • a printer to print out a template

Step 1: Measure Out Your Template

For this tutorial we'll be using letter sized paper, which is the size of paper you'll find in most American homes and offices. On the short side of our paper, we're going to use our ruler to mark at .5", 4.25" (halfway across the page), and 4.75". This will divide our page into two equally sized columns with a .5" border on the left for the binding. Flip the paper over and mark at 3.75", 4.25", and 8". Use your ruler to connect the the dots to create your guides.

Next we'll mark along the long side of our paper on both sides at 2.75" intervals. Connect these dots to make your horizontal guides. You've now separated your page into 8 frames for drawing with a marked edge for your binding. For my flipbook I had 24 frames made from 3 sheets of paper, so you may need to repeat this step a few more times.

If you have a printer, you can download this template to get started.

Step 2: Design Your Sprites

Now we get to the fun drawing part where you will design your sprites!You may have used sprites before with scratch tutorials to make a moving scene. Sprites are the individual components of the drawing that come together to form a moving scene. These are the individual srawings that when put together in your flipbook, will give the effect of motion when the pages are flipped. Here I am drawing a dog running, and I broke the motion into four different sprites, with the dogs legs in different positions for the separate frames.

Research animation sprites if you need inspiration or need to see how different animals and objects move.

Step 3: Trace Your Frames

Now that you have designed your sprites, you will trace them into your flipbook to create the frames of your animation. I am creating a dog running from the right to the left of the page, so I shifted each frame slightly to show movement. Repeat this step for each frame of your drawing.

To make tracing easier, hold your paper up to the window so the light coming through helps you view what you are tracing.

This step can also be done on a computer in a program like google draw or gravit, and then your pages printed out.

Step 4: Add Any More Details

Now is the time to add more details! Give your flipbook more detail and visual interest! I added a collar to my dog and some grass in the background. Repeat this with each frame.

Step 5: Cut Out Your Frames

Using you scissors, cut out each frame. Make sure to leave the border on the left side of the frame for the binding.

Stack all of your frames in order, and tap your pages down to the right side of the book so all of the pages are aligned.

Step 6: Bind Your Book

With your pages all assembled together, its time to bind your book. I used a binder clip for thing, but you can also use rubber bands or glue, too. See what you have around your house, and investigate which materials work best to bind your book.

If you want to add a title page like I did, now is the time to add it.

Step 7: Show Off Your Flipbook

Your flipbook is now finished! Flip through the pages and show off your story! If you want to go further, you can add to your story by creating additional flipbooks with more scenes!

We'd love to see what your making while we are all self isolating, so add pictures of your project to the comments or the STEAM at Drew facebook page!