Puffy Paper Rainbows

These Puffy Paper Rainbows brighten up any space & are perfect for sharing a sunny ray of hope on a dull day!

Perfect to make for St Patrick's Day or any time during the year, these puffy paper rainbows are a great way to recycle old magazines, newspapers or packaging that you might have hanging around. 

I've made several of these with children of different ages & have just adapted the activity slightly each time to suit their abilities. For example, when I made these with preschoolers,  I created the puffy shape prior to the activity so the children could get painting straight away. In contrast, older children have loved drawing & creating their own rainbow shapes before selecting the paint & materials they wish to use.

To create our Puffy Paper Rainbows we used 2 sheets of white A3 paper. You could use A4 or any size, but we found A3 paper gave us a rainbow which wasn't too small to paint, or to huge to hang up at home! We folded both the sheets of paper in half & drew half an arch/rainbow on one sheet. We cut out both sheets together to create our 2 rainbows. 

To make our rainbow 'puffy' we needed to create a pouch, so we stapled the outer edges of the 2 rainbow sheets together leaving the middle arch free so we could insert the paper.

We then scrunched up old paper & magazines into rough tennis ball size shapes & filled the pouch with paper, making sure we filled the corners too. Then once our rainbows were puffy enough we simply stapled the open section together, & our white rainbow shapes were ready for some paint!

We had a selection of rainbow coloured paints along with a variety of different sized brushes & sponges. Most of the children created a classic rainbow, but others painted with their fingers or hands creating unique patterns & blending colours.

I love the freedom this activity offers & that you could create your own fabulous rainbow design!

When the children had finished their designs we left the rainbows to dry.

If you wish, you could add some clouds to the bottom of your rainbow. We created ours by gluing on some recycled fabric stuffing, but you could use any scraps of material or paper.

 We then punched a hole in the top & threaded some ribbon through so we could hang our rainbows up. 

If you wish to have these hanging up & spinning around you could paint the back of the rainbow too. These would look beautiful hanging from any ceiling, especially in a classroom.

These rainbows bring a little joy & sparkle to any day, & are a great way for children to explore colours, patterns & textures. 

Looking for more Rainbow activities?  You might like our: