Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Indian Teepee

Just in time for Thanksgiving, make your own teepee for all the little wild indians to play in!  This will surely be a big hit!  We actually made this for a school project but I thought it would be great to pull back out and keep the kids out of my hair occupied since they're out of school while I get some baking done.  They could have a great time playing pilgrims and indians! I did this a while back before I was blogging (wish I would've taken pictures while we made it) but hopefully the instructions will be clear enough for you to follow.  Remember, it need not be perfect- this is for fun!

Materials Needed:

5 sticks approximately 6 - 8 feet long (you could also substitute broomsticks or PVC pipe)
9 x 12 canvas drop cloth or tarp (you could also use a large solid color sheet)
leather cording (rope, twine, shoestrings, again- use what you have)
measuring tape

Step 1:
Make sure your sticks have no sharp, pointy edges- you want this to be fun- not dangerous!
Tie the leather cording onto the top of the first stick, then onto the next, and so forth until they are all tied and connected to each other.  You should then be able to stand them up like a tripod and spread them out to create the teepee frame. 

Step 2:
Fold the drop cloth in half so that it forms a 9 x 6 foot rectangle. 

Step 3:
Measure in 1 foot along the fold and mark the spot.  Cut a 6 foot length of rope or string.  Have another person (your child can help with this step) hold the rope at the spot that you marked.    Tie the opposite end of the string to a marker.

Step 4:
Step away from the other person until the line is taut and move the rope in an arc, marking a line on the canvas as you go.

Step 5:
Cut along the line.  Also cut a smaller arc out at the top.  This is the pattern I used for cutting out the teepee.  I found this on the Family Fun website. 

Step 6:
Drape the cloth over the frame, overlapping the top a bit.  Snip holes on each side at the top front.  I think I did about 8 but it just depends on how far up you want your teepee to open up.  Lace up the holes with the leather cord and tie it.   After draping your cloth on the frame, if you find it is too long at the bottom as I did, just trim away any excess until it is the right size for the sticks you are using.  Also, snip a few holes around the circumference of the top and lace the cord through it.  This can be used to tighten or loosen the cloth.

Step 7:
Paint your teepee.  I had my son do most of this.  We looked up Indian symbols and he painted them on.  He really enjoyed this part.

Step 8:
After the paint has dried, enjoy your teepee.  It can easily be taken down and reassembled. 

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