Prep: 5-10 Minutes / Activity Time: 15-20 Minutes

Through an easy sequence of folds, you and your child can make a picture frame out of paper. This activity is a fun, creative way for your child to practice both fine motor and beginning writing skills.

  • paper
  • crayons, pencils and/or markers
  • ruler

Optional: scissors, tape

Step 1: Take a sheet of paper and orient it so that it is horizontal (landscape). If your paper is standard notebook or printer paper (8.5” x 11”), cut or tear off about 1”.






Step 2: If one side of the paper is blank, turn it over so that side faces you. Fold the top and bottom of the paper down so they make folds that are about 1 ½”.






Step 3: Next, fold the left and right sides inward so they also make 1 ½” folds. The shape of your paper should resemble a square.






Step 4: Turn your paper over; if you have a pattern or print on the other side, it should face you now. Fold each corner into a triangle, so that the point of the triangle touches the center. It’s okay if the corners overlap a bit or are not equal in size.






Step 5: Turn your creation over and voilà, you have a frame! One of the triangles can be brought down to serve as a frame stand.






Step 6: After you’ve made your frame (or you and your child together have made frames), give your child some paper to make a portrait of himself. Help him write his name on the portrait and insert it in the frame when it’s finished. If you've used blank paper to make a frame, encourage your child to draw on it. Make sure to help him add his name.


Instead of folding the paper to make a frame, draw a frame on the piece of paper, or cut the paper in a particular shape, like a heart or diamond. Your child can draw his portrait inside the drawn frame or shape.

If there is more paper and your child is still having fun, make more frames for other family members or friends. Your child can draw their portraits and add them to the frames, or draw their portraits right in the frames. Help him add their names, too.