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C R E A T E: Moveable Lizards

May 25, 2018 | By Annie Rogers

It’s the simple things.
Sometimes you give a young artist a piece of blank paper, cut into a certain shape, and it’s just enough: enough to inspire imagination, to ignite curiosity, to spark some new way of thinking.

At Arts For Life, we do a lot of hands-on research when it comes to writing lessons, and we happen to think we’re pretty darn good at  it. But writing a good lesson doesn’t always mean incorporating some new technique, or involving a laundry list of materials. In fact, sometimes the best lesson for the moment is just the opposite: streamlined, pared-down, and just waiting for an artist’s touch.

Goals: Photo May 23, 2 31 50 PM

  • To learn how to make a 2D puppet move by using brads at the joints
  • To learn to construct an object or animal by assembling its individual parts
  • To practice fine motor skills by placing each brad into the pre-punched hole provided


            >joint– the point at which parts are joined together and can move (ex. wrist, elbow)


  • MovingLizard templates
  • PencilPhoto May 23, 2 45 50 PM
  • White Cardstock
  • Scissors
  • Small/Regular Hole punch
  • Googly eyes/tacky glue
  • Brads (2 per lizard)
  • Colored markers, pencils, crayons, oil pastels


  1. Use a pencil to trace around each of the templates: head, body, tail, front legs, and back legs.  You’ll need one of each.
  2. Cut out each body part using scissors.Photo May 23, 2 47 27 PM
  3. Use a hole punch to make holes. Head: at the base of the neck. Tail: at the broad end. Body: one hole on the skinny end, one hole on the wide end. Legs (both sets): in the middle of the center part.
  4. Use markers, pencils, crayons, or pastels to draw a different pattern on each body part.
  5. Line up the hole in the back of the body (the thicker end) with the holes in the back (bigger) legs and the tail.
  6. Stick a brad through and secure it in the back.
  7. Line up the hole in the front of the body with the hole in the head and front legs. Secure a brad there too.Photo May 23, 2 52 19 PM
  8. Add googly eyes using tacky glue.

Tweak It!:
– Create a different moving animal, using the same concept: draw each body part and decorate each section. Decide where the joints are, and punch holes where the body parts will connect. Attach with brads.
-Embellish your lizard (or other animal) with sequins, buttons, feathers, or stickers. (Just make sure that none of these extra elements impede movement!)

Lizard by James: