How to Make a Canoe With Paper

Create your own canoes using paper and yarn.
canoe's image by Lee O'Dell from

Teach kids about traditional Native American forms of transportation by teaching them to make their own canoe. Using construction paper and yarn, create a canoe similar to the traditional birch bark canoes used by many Native American tribes, according to the Enchanted Learning website. This paper craft is fairly simple, requiring only basic folding and cutting skills. Allow kids to paint Native American symbols, animal shapes and other decorations on the sides of their finished canoes.

Create your own canoes using paper and yarn.
canoe's image by Lee O'Dell from

Things You'll Need

  • Tempera Paint
  • Scissors
  • Hole Punch
  • Paintbrushes
  • Yarn
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Brown Construction Paper Or Brown Paper Bags

Hold a piece of brown construction paper so that the long sides face up and down. Fold the paper in half. Turn the paper so that the folded line is at the top.

Measure 1/2 inch down from the folded edge of the paper. Draw a line with a pencil. Open the paper and fold it along the line you just marked. Repeat this step on the other side of the original fold. The fold should make the paper resemble the letter W.

Fold along all the folds and turn so the folded end is at the bottom. Draw a semicircle on the short end of the paper that connects the folded edge with the open edge. Repeat on the opposite side. The lines should create a large, shallow U shape or a shape like a canoe.

Cut along the lines using care to keep the folded edge at the bottom. The cutout shape should look like a canoe. Keeping the folded end at the bottom, punch holes 1/4 inch apart along the right and left sides.

Cut a length of yarn and tie a knot in one end. Weave the yarn through the holes in the front and back of the canoe. Trim any excess yarn and secure with a knot in the loose end.

Open the canoe using your fingers. Decorate the sides of the canoe with animals, symbols or other design.