Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Mardi Gras Masks

I found a pattern for a simple Mardi Gras mask online (I can't remember where - sorry!!).  It was just a basic/simple shape.

My original plan was to use the pattern to make simple masks for my students to decorate - and we did.  I started off using cardboard from recycled cereal boxes for my two masks (which was perfect - stiff enough to support lots of paint and decorations, and yet thin enough to cut out with scissors).  However, cutting the cereal-box cardboard with scissors was pretty hard on my hands and the thought of having to cut out over 25 of them for my students was rather daunting.  I ended up switching to old, recycled file folders.  The file folders are a little stiffer than card stock but a lot easier to cut than the cereal box cardboard. Personally I prefer the cereal box cardboard and it's not too hard on the hands if you only have to cut out one or two.

The steps I followed:
  1. Print off the template (these ones are not exactly the same but you can find tons of templates online if you do a search for Mardi Gras Mask template).
  2. Cut out the template including eye-holes.
  3. Place your template on top of the cardboard you want to use for your mask and trace with a pencil.
  4. Cut out the cardboard mask.
  5. Glue a Popsicle Stick to the back/side. 
  6. Decorate.
Simple right?  Well it really was that simple.  All of our students (from our low-functioning to our high-functioning) had fun decorating the masks with paint, glitter, and feathers.  I too, had a blast decorating the masks.  So much so, that I had to make 2 masks (and really wanted to make more but didn't have a reason to).

Butterfly Mask
My first mask was decorated with blue paints, silver glitter glue (which was used to apply glitter dots on the lower part of the mask, and glitter lines down the center lines and around the eyes), and feathers. Fun and pretty, and looks a bit like a butterfly.





But my favorite ended being the owl mask.

I used shades of aqua paints.  I did add little aqua glitter dots in the corner of the faux-feathers. But my favorite part is the faux-feathers which I painted in gradually-darkening shades of aqua.  The faux-feathers are actually a bunch of the cardboard eye-holes which I cut out from other masks. 
Owl Mask
A mask made by a co-worker
 Our students loved this craft and it certainly made our classroom festive.  I can't wait to do it again next year!



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