How to Build a Model Skeleton

skeleton image by Wingnut Designs from

Cotton Swab Skeleton Model

Draw the skull with a white-ink pen on black paper. Position the skull at the top of the black paper to ensure there's enough room for the rest of the body.

Glue cotton swabs to the black paper to form the basic arms, legs and spine of the skeleton. Orient the heads of the swabs to each other to represent joints. Cut the swabs in half to form hands and fingers.

Draw in extra detail with the white-ink pen. For example, draw radiating arcs from the central spine to represent the rib cage.

Moveable Model Skeleton

Draw a skeleton with your pencil on white paper. Make the bones much wider than the width of a hole punch.

Cut out the skeleton with your scissors, carefully snipping off any scraps that make the skeleton look frayed.

Cut the skeleton apart at all the major joints such as the shoulder and elbow.

Lay the two ends of a joint, such as the femur and shin bones, overlapping at the joining point and insert a metal brad to connect the two. Flatten the teeth of the brad and continue this process until you assemble the entire skeleton. Move the skeleton into a particular shape.

Things You'll Need

  • White and black paper
  • Metal brads
  • Scissors
  • Cotton swabs
  • Glue
  • White-ink pen