A traditional igloo is a domed snow building. Because they are made of snow, they do not last long. But because the Inuit people travel often and do not stay in one place very long, this is not a problem. Igloos can be made without snow too. You can make igloos out of sugar cubes and icing or plastic milk jugs. Milk jug igloos are great projects for kindergartners learning about the Inuit people. Once they are completed, you can use them as a fort or as a reading station for your students.
Assuming you are doing this craft in a classroom environment, you will want to have your students bring in milk jug. In a class of 20, including you, that would equal about eight jugs per person. You will need a total of 155 to 160 jugs.
Milk will spoil and add a very unpleasant odor to your classroom, so it is best to send instructions home to your students’ parents to have them wash out the milk jugs with warm water and dish soap before sending them to school. You will also want to make sure they allow them to thoroughly dry before reattaching the cap. Once you get the jugs, it is best that you wash them a second time to ensure all the milk has been cleaned away.
The First Layer
To begin your construction, use a yard stick to indicate where the door will be and also help to keep the circular shape of the igloo. You will start by creating an arc that goes from end to end of the yard stick, with the lids pointing inward. For more stability, make sure the jugs are on their sides. You can allow your students to place the milk jugs, but you should use a hot glue gun to attach the the jugs to one another.
Layers Two, Three, and Four
For the second layer, place another row of milk jugs, again hot gluing them to one another. This time, do not line them up directly on top of the bottom layer. Instead, stagger them so that you will only use 22 this time. Repeat this procedure for the next two layers, again using fewer jugs per layer.
The Door Frame and The Roof
The fifth layer is just like the first four, expect you need to top off the door frame. To accomplish this, lay a yard stick across the opening to support the milk jugs. Create a full circle rather than just an arc. Continue to make four more layers of milk jugs until you have closed in the roof.
Alternative to Milk Jugs
You can use any kind of jug that is shaped like a gallon milk jug. Most grocery stores now offer orange juice, lemonade, tea and fruit punches in jugs. By using an alternate liquid jug, you will avoid the sour milk smell that can develop if the jugs are not thoroughly cleaned.