Paper Plate Ninja Turtles: another great preschool craft in our A-Z Paper Plate Crafts series!.
Ok, I KNOW there are tons of Ninja Turtle fans out there because whenever I post a TMNT craft on my Facebook page, the response is terrific. I also know there are tons of you who love paper plate crafts. If you and your kids happen to be fans you’ll love these paper plate Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! They’re easy, inexpensive, and you can make them with stuff you already have around the house.
Personally, I have never quite understood the fixation with Ninja Turtles. Four pizza-loving turtles named after world-famous artists, living in the sewers of New York, fighting off crime and evil… It’s a bizarre concept, but there’s no doubt about it, kids have been loving these good guys since they first appeared in cartoons and comic books back in the 80’s.
I’ve had Ninja Turtles on my mind for a while for our paper plate craft collection. As you may know, we’re crafting through the alphabet with paper plates, and I figured Ninja Turtles would be kind of flexible because we could use them for a letter “T” craft if we need to, or we could use them for the netter “N”. Believe it or not, those have been two of the toughest letters to think of a craft for, so I like that we can use our turtles for either.
Let me show you how we made these guys.
For our paper plate Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, we used:
- paper plates
- coffee filters
- paint – green, red, blue, purple, orange
- googly eyes
- black marker
We started by painting our paper plates green. I put out a few different shades of green because the hooligans love to mix colours when they’re painting. Offering 2 or more shades of the same colour lets them see what happens when they blend and swirl the paint together, and the darker and lighter shades add depth and highlights to our projects.
While our paper plates dried by the fire, we painted our coffee filters. These would be the Ninja Turtles’ masks: red for Raphael, blue for Leonardo, orange for Michelangelo and purple for Donatello.
At first I’d planned to use wide ribbon or felt for the turtles’ masks but it turned out I didn’t have enough each colour in either the ribbon or the felt.
Fortunately, we had just painted coffee filters a couple of weeks ago when we were making poppy crafts, and I suspected we could use that process to make our masks. We did, and it worked very well.
The girls painted the coffee filters in the Ninja Turtles’ colours, and when they were dry, we folded them in thirds.
The kids glued them across their paper plates, and they were a perfect fit.
As soon as we had those masks on the plates, without even adding anything else, they looked like ninja turtles. It’s amazing how we’ve come to associate that coloured band on a green background with TMNT’s. There’s definitely no mistaking that look!
Next, we added two big googly eyes to each turtle. One hooligan applied her glue straight on to the plate, while the other added hers directly to the googly eyes.
With the eyes in place, it was time for our turtles’ mouths. This is where the marker comes into play.
Look at the way this three year old drew the mouths on the turtles. When I saw her making a large oval on the first turtle, I was curious, as most young children make one line (usually a smile) when they’re drawing a face. Then, when she added the criss-cross lines to the oval, it all made sense to me. I was so impressed! What a great sense of perception for such a young age.
Once all the mouths were drawn on, our paper plate Ninja Turtle collection was complete!
You may also enjoy these ninja crafts and activities:
Cardboard Roll Ninja Turtle Ornaments – Happy Hooligans
Craft Stick Ninja Ornaments – Happy Hooligans
Ninja Turtle Birthday Party Ideas – by Space Ships and Laser Beams
15 Ninja Turtle Crafts – by Love and Marriage Blog
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Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. In 1997, Jackie stepped out of the corporate world to start a family and to open her own home daycare. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.