Preschool programs

Confetti and Pretty Paper

Books To Share

  • Butterflies for Kiri by Cathryn Falwell.
  • Confetti: Poems for Children by Pat Mora.
  • The Magic Fan by Keith Baker.
  • The Paper Dragon by Marguerite W. Davol.
  • The Piñata Maker by George Ancona.
  • Saint Valentine by Robert Sabuda.

Books To Show

  • A Carp for Kimiko by Virginia Kroll.
  • The Paper Princess by Elisa Kleven.
  • The Perfect Piñata by Kelli Kyle Dominguez.
  • Yoko's Paper Cranes by Rosemary Wells.
  • Young Naturalist Pop-Up Handbook: Butterflies by Robert Sabuda.

Bulletin Board

Papel Picado

Papel picado with cut shapes

  • Tissue paper sheets
  • Scissors
  • String
  • Paste

Fold the edge of the tissue paper to create a 1/2-inch border to insert the string. Fold the tissue paper several times accordion style. Snip designs and shapes. Progressively unfold the paper, cutting at each unfolding. Cut several pieces of paper. Place the string along the 1/2-inch border and lightly glue the tissues in place, folding the border over to cover the string. Hang the papel picado decorations across the bulletin board.


Purchase or make piñatas and hang them around the library as decorations.


Asia For Kids at sells an Asian fan rubber stamp that can be stamped on each child’s hand after the program.


Cut fan shapes in a variety of colors using Ellison die or similar pattern.


“Chinese Fan” in Ring a Ring a Roses by Flint Public Library.


Dancing Paper

(From Confetti: Poems for Children by Pat Mora, published by Lee and Low. Excerpt reprinted with permission.)

Remember cascarones,

to hide will be in vain.

Egg-bursts of bright confetti

will shower us like rain.


Confetti Art

  • Tinted rice prepared in advance
  • Tag board
  • Glue
  • Brush
  • Yarn
  • Pencil
  • Scissors

Egg decorated with confetti


To tint the rice, add food coloring and a little rubbing alcohol to water in a bowl. Soak the rice until it reaches the color desired. Drain the rice and spread on a paper towel to dry. Have each child draw a shape or image or provide patterns for the children to trace. Let each child cut out the image. Eggs, flowers, or fish work well and can be prepared in advance for very young children. Glue yarn as appropriate to provide divided sections. Brush a thin layer of glue within the section and sprinkle colored rice in the section. Continue until finished. Let the glue dry before moving the finished creation.

Confetti Butterflies

  • Zip-lock plastic sandwich bags
  • Colored tissue paper
  • Pipe cleaners

confetti butterfly


Give each child a plastic sandwich bag. Let the child tear up pieces of tissue paper into small pieces and put the pieces into the plastic bag. Zip the plastic bag closed with the pieces of tissue paper are spread out around the bag. Pinch the bag in the middle and wrap the pipe cleaner around to make the body, leaving the ends crossed for antennae.


  • Precut bookmark blanks
  • Glue sticks
  • Small stickers
  • Discarded book jackets
  • Hole punch
  • Yarn
  • Scissors

Purchase bookmark blanks from a craft supplier or use a die cut machine to create them. In advance, cut out colorful objects from old book jackets, book catalogs, or magazines. If you have a die cut machine or punches, cut shapes from old book jackets. Many craft suppliers sell punches that are shaped like leaves, stars, spirals, etc. Give each child a bookmark blank, glue stick, stickers, and punched or cut shapes. Each child then arranges the items on the bookmark blank and glues them in place. Punch a hole at the top of the bookmark and tie a piece of yarn through the hole.


Scroll Art

After reading The Paper Dragon, lay out a large piece of brown butcher paper on a table or the floor. Let each child paint on part of the paper. Leave the ends clean so that they can be rolled like a scroll.

Guest Speakers

Invite an artist to show the children how to make origami. If you cannot locate an origami artist, select simple origami projects and do this as a parent/child activity or a make and take activity to be done at home.

Ask a magician to present simple tricks that use paper, confetti, and streamers. If you cannot locate a magician, try the magic yourself using Caroline Feller Bauer's book Leading Kids to Books Through Magic. The "Magic Door to Books" trick is very simple.


Cascarones Treats

Use an egg shaped cookie cutter to cut bread. Spread with cream cheese. Provide multi-colored sprinkles, small round candies, and icing in tubes. Let each child add "confetti" to make colorful cascarones.

Audio Recordings

“Piñata” on ¡Piñata! and More: Bilingual Songs for Children by Sarah Barchas.


Note: Show one section of longer videos or DVDs as part of your program. For a storytime program, limit the film to 10-12 minutes. Display the other videos for parents and caregivers to check out.

  • In the Small, Small Pond. (5 minutes)
  • The Paper Bag Princess. (25 minutes)
  • Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes. (30 minutes)


The Art Lesson.

Web Sites

American Girl

Denise Fleming's Papermaking Instructions (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Making Friends

Robert Sabuda Pop-ups

Professional Resources

  • “Creating Pop-ups” by Sherry Ball in Book Links, v. 12, no. 6. June/July 2003, pp. 25-27.
  • Making Magic Windows: Creating Papel Picado/Cut-Paper Art by Carmen Lomas Garza.
  • Pop-o-Mania: How to Create Your Own Pop-Ups by Barbara Valenta.
  • Piñatas and Paper Flowers by Lila Perl Yerkow.
  • “Robert Sabuda on the Art of the Pop-up” by Robert Sabuda in Book Links, v. 12, no. 6. June/July 2003, pp. 21-24.


Texas Reading Club 2004 Programming Manual / Color Your World...Read!

Published by the Library Development Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Page last modified: June 14, 2011