This is a very simple method for a classroom sketchbook. It can be any size you want, but I always made mine about the size of a regular sheet of paper because this makes it easy for students to tuck extra worksheets inside the cover.
However, a caution on that, sometimes, they find this to be a handy place to keep…everything! Math assignments, permission slips from two weeks ago, gum wrappers…you name it!
This one is the first method that I tried and I love it because I can make this one without purchasing anything! All the supplies are already in my cabinets. And I can pick up FREE sheets of cardboard in the SAMs isles after they finish stocking.
- (1) 12” x 18” sheet of cardboard
- (10 or 20) 11” x 17” sheets of drawing paper (or if you want to make things really easy, just use legal sized copy paper)
- (1 or 2) large rubber bands
- two to three 50 minute class periods
- Cut parts.
- Depending on the age of your students, you can either have all of these sheets cut before hand or you can have the students do it themselves. I teach high school, so I have always had them cut the cardboard part and provided the paper for them. This way they get to practice their ruler using skills, which sadly, I have found to be lacking in many students.
- (Note on cutting the cardboard. One thing to be certain they cut with "the grain” of the cardboard. This makes folding the cardboard much easier.)
- Take the cardboard and make a score mark down the middle where the spine is going to be (at 9”). Take the stack of drawing paper and fold them all in half at the same time. Place the paper in the middle of the cardboard and then stretch one rubber band around the spine. Close the book and stretch the other rubber band around the outside to keep it closed.
- I always have the students design their sketchbook covers. Usually I just let them do what they want with the broad instruction to make it “represent them.” However, you could give them some kind of theme to follow if you wanted to.
- Cut parts.
- Cost Effective. This can be made with items found in most art rooms.
- Time. Easy and fast to assemble.
- Durable. These puppies last all year long with the occasional rubber band replacement.
- Versatile. It is not easy to add pages to the sketchbook, including any worksheets that I give out.
If you try this one out, I would love to hear how it went for you or if you have any suggestions!