Upcycled Story Magnets

We love books in this house - it's official! We often share books with friends, passing on baby books & other books Minnie has duplicates of. It's a great way to recycle, & share pre-loved tales. Some books however have been loved more than others & have ended up with folded/torn pages, & even chewed corners. This craft is great for upcycling books just like this.


 Minnie has recently collected a few Charlie & Lola comics, & I hate to throw them out when she has finished with them. The great thing about these comics is that they often come with a selection of character stickers, which are also perfect for this craft.


These story magnets can be made using any favourite comic/book character, we've chosen Charlie & Lola as they are currently Minnie's favourites. The wonderful thing about Lauren Child's Charlie & Lola series is that she combines cartoon style illustrations with pictures of everyday objects. This is why these magnets work so well, you can add any images alongside Charlie & Lola to create the same effect as the illustrations in the books.

 Here's how we made them...

We cut around the chosen images from the comic & stuck them onto a sheet of  recycled card, along with any stickers from the comic. Once cut out, we added as many as possible to a laminating sheet. (You could also use contact paper / sticky back plastic.)

After laminating we cut each image out & added an adhesive magnet to the back. We ran out of adhesive magnet tape, so recycled some free magnets that came with some smoothies & attached with some double sided tape. (More recycling - fab!)


 Here are our upcycled Charlie & Lola magnets.




Minnie loves spending time outside & gardening, so we gave this set of magnets an outdoor theme. I found a few pictures from a gardening magazine, & printed off a few images of veggies we are growing in our garden, along with some of Minnie's favourite food & activities. Once printed off, cut out & laminated, we again added magnets to the back of the images. (I printed the images on thin card.)

Finally, I found a few 'action' shots of Minnie so printed them, cut out, laminated & added magnets to the back.

Here's our selection of images & photos to add to our Charlie & Lola magnets.


And here's our full set of Story Magnets.


These magnets are great for encouraging literacy, creativity & imagination, exploring emotions, fantasy/familiar situations, encouraging a sense of identity, & so many other areas of learning, including maths.


It's pretty neat to star in your own Charlie & Lola story too!






Another great thing about these story magnets is that the characters can take part in different stories/scenarios by simply swapping or adding different magnets. For example, by adding pictures of sandcastles/ buckets/spades/boats/surfers etc & Minnie, Charlie & Lola could be at the beach, or add plates/tables/cutlery/selection of food & they're cooking/sharing a meal. You can create a unique set of play magnets which reflect your child's likes & interests.

There are so many story characters that would make a great set of magnets; Peppa Pig, Kipper, or how about The Hungry Caterpillar. The Hungry Caterpillar's selection of foods would be great to explore, along with the life cycle of the caterpillar.


Although these did take a little time to make, they are great to use again & again.
I've stored the magnets in a metal tin, which not only keeps them neat, but also means they are less likely to get lost as they stick to the tin!



This lovely tin is perfect to take on holiday or car journeys, & the magnets can be easily used on the back of a baking tray.
 

These laminated images can also be used on flannel / felt boards using sticky velcro tabs on the back instead of the magnetic strip. If you use thick magnets you could add the Velcro as well & the images become truly versatile!


I can see this set of magnets growing & growing & I can't wait to hear all the stories Minnie has to tell. These are currently being played with on the fridge, but I suspect it will not be long before they begin to journey around the house too :)


These upcycled story magnets would be great for older children to make, & their own drawings could be added to the set of magnets. A fun activity for the holidays, whatever the weather!



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32 comments:

  1. These are adorable! Oh, the stories that will be told with them! What a great idea!

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  2. This is a great idea:)

    Great to improve imagination!

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  3. Absolutely brilliant! Thanks for sharing an idea that never occurred to me!

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  4. What a FANTASTIC idea! :-)

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  5. Catherine, this is such a great idea. Such a nice way to reuse old stories. I can imagine there is going to be lots of creative storytelling at your place :)

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  6. Oh oh oh! These are simply PERFECT!!! And you are right Charlie & Lola style is perfect for mix and matching with your own photos. HOW LOVELY!!! You are a clever lady!

    Thank you again for sharing this on Kids Get Crafty!

    Maggy

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  7. That`s fantastic and so much fun! It`s lovely to use kids photos as well :)

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  8. This is a SUPER idea. A great way to recycle those coloring book pages that they spend so much time working on as well.

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  9. Stopping by from ABC & 123! I love the idea about using your daughter's pictures...I tried this with a Nativity for Christmas and was fun...I have to tried again!!! Thanks for sharing!

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  10. Those look like so much fun. I can think of lots of possibilites here.

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  11. This is a super cool idea! Where do you get the adhesive magnets though?

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  12. Fabulous! A great way of recycling the magazines, photos and freebie magnets.

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  13. Oh my gosh, this is so fun! I love the magnets of the kids mixed in! So cute! Thanks for sharing at For the Kids Fridays, as always! I'm pass this post along to my Facebook friends! :)

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  14. I love this idea, particularly using images of the children. Definitely gonna have to give this one a try!

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  15. Love this idea. Tracked you down via my blog widget and my post today is about storytelling! Serendipity. Adding a link to this post from mine.

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  16. Love! :) Thanks for adding this on High paw last week... I'm a bit late on reading ;) but I'll get through them all! :)

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  17. A wonderful use for magnets. Before we had access to magnetic strips I use to use velcro and felt to put items up in a similar fashion. Magnetic approach is much neater and easier.

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  18. Thank you for sharing your wonderful ideas. I will try magnets in my storytelling with kids. Greetings from Athens

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  19. What an AWESOME idea!

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  20. what a wonderful idea i can not wait to make these and such wonderful directions. Thank you so much!!!

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  21. I love this activity, especially the idea of making magnetic pictures of one's children to add to the mix. I work at a library, so it's easy for me to grab destroyed and discarded children's books for craft projects. (Usually I decoupage the pictures--now I want to make magnets!)

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  22. What a fab idea!

    Would love for you to link it up at my new Empty Your Archive link party which is a chance to dust off great posts from your archive - there is a focus this week on reading - would really love to see you there, Alice @ Mums Make Lists x

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  23. Ooooo fabulous! Will be sharing your idea on our FB this week, and tagging your page, this week.

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  24. I love this! I did something similar recently using Little Einsteins stickers. I had a pile of those freebie advertising magnets and mod podged the stickers directly onto the front of the magnets then cut out. I like your method better - it has to be easier cutting. My girls were given an easel for Christmas this year and they're really enjoying the magnetic side with their new Little Einstein magnets. They will go bonkers over having magnets of themselves! Thanks for the idea! :)

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  25. WOW! GREAT Ideas!!! I've been keeping such worn out books and wondering what to do with them! It's such a pity to discard or even use for art... This is simply ingenious! Thanks for sharing! So gonna do this and share!

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  26. This is pure brilliance!!! What an incredible idea! Can't wait to make these for my little ones!

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  27. We love photocopying some of the key pictures and laminated them to put into our story sack. So naturally we thought these were too cute!! We also use pics of our little monsters for small world play! http://marcstreasurebasket.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/doctors-nurses-small-world-people.html

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