Coastal US State Mini Parade Float & Class Trifold Poster (Elementary School Project)

11:55 AM

Looking for ideas to help make a coastal themed mini parade float? I know what you mean. Last year when my fifth grader told me he had to make a mini parade float for a major class project I had no idea what he was talking about. I had never even hear of a school project like that, and I didn't even know where to start. There also was not much information or examples on the internet about it either. 

My two boys are a year apart in school so this year I felt like we had a better handle on the mini parade float situation since this was our second year at it. We also got to attend the mini parade at their school and saw what the other kids came up with.

This year my son picked Rhode Island which is Awesome because there are so many features about Rhode Island the Ocean State. The only money we spent on this project was for the trip-fold poster and the pictures we had to print at our local print shop because our home printer is on the fritz. 

TIP: Have your child sketch out the float design first before you get started on it. It will make the whole process go so much smoother. 

My favorite part of this whole project was these paper origami sail boats my son made. I am terrible at origami and although my eleven year old try to show me how to make it, I was useless. But he was able to make all three in just a few minutes. Here is a little demo station below on how to make your own paper sail boats. 

The umbrellas are just circles with a little slit cut out half way into the circle and then you fold them slightly in to make a cone shape. Then add toothpicks or sticks for the umbrella stand. The towels are just colored construction paper decorated with simple stripes. 

Below you can get a free blue and yellow mini flag printable to make your own little flag banner. Just click here to go to google docs for easy printing and downloading. 

The Little Details:
We added some craft rope throughout to add a more nautical feel,  pebbles to make it feel like a cliff side beach, drew shingles on the side of the top of the float to represent the coastal homes of the east coast, and the state fish the Stripped Bass are hanging like fresh caught fish on the sides of the float. 

To add a little something extra special we cut out the light part of the light house picture and hot  glued a mini candle to the back to poke out so the light house actually had light. 

We waited until the night before to do this project and was surprised at how smooth it all went. I do not recommend you waiting until last minute though. Our first float last year took a week for us to figure it all out. All in all we spent about five hours on both the float and the poster. I had my son do most of the work and just checked on him periodically to make sure everything was going great. 

Even though he was a little heavy handed on the hot glue gun it all turned out and he was a very happy boy getting pull his creation around on his skateboard the next morning at the official mini parade. 


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