Category Archives: Creative Saturdays

A Bale of Turtles

Since spring is around the corner what a great time to check out the habits of turtles and learn how to make a bale of turtles.

bale of turtles

Here are some turtle facts:

  • Turtles are reptiles which means they are vertebrate animals of a class that includes snakes, lizards, crocodiles, turtles, and tortoises. They are distinguished by having a dry scaly skin and typically laying soft-shelled eggs on land.
  • Their upper shell are called carapaces.
  • Their lower shells are called plastrons.
  • Many (but not all) can hide their heads when they need protection.
  • Turtles are cold blooded which means they cannot control their body temperature and therefore become sluggish in cold weather. Have you seen turtles sunning themselves? 
  • The largest turtle is the leatherback and can weight over 2000 lbs (900 kg).

More information and craft and research ideas are found in Tadeo Turtle.

A simple project but fun to do. You can make a school of turtles, which I found out is called a “bale of turtles”. This week we look at how to make a simple egg carton Tadeo turtle.

bale of turtles


  • Egg Carton (either styrofoam or cardboard)
  • Googly Eyes (not necessary but fun)
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Paper (construction, coloured paper, card stock)

Instructions for a Bale of Turtles:

1. Cut out each egg pocket from the case of eggs.

bale of turtles

Use styrofoam egg cartons or cardboard

2. From the paper, cut out 2 round circles (use a bottle for tracing) to match the pocket; cut out 1 head, 1 tail and 4 legs.

bale of turtles

3.  Glue the inner edges of the appendages (head, tail and 4 legs) inside the two rounded circles. They are stuck inside the circle.

4. Colour the shell using paint or markers.

5. Glue the shell to the circled paper

6. Put the googly eyes on the header and using a marker, mark the toes on each foot.

bale of turtles

Bottle Cap Tadeo Turtles:

Smaller Turtles can be made from water bottle caps. Or any cap will do. Using the same method as above. I found that to get the watercolour paint to adhere to the plastic cap I needed to paint the cap with glue first (or Podge).

bale of turtles

All you need is a bottle cap and paper, scissors, glue, markers or paint.


bale of turtles


 Connect With Janis

bale of turtles

In 2001, Janis gave her life to Christ. She started journaling as a way to organize her thoughts, feelings, and prayers. She is a member of two cross-Canadian Christian writers’ groups, The Word Guild and Inscribe Christian Writers Fellowship.

In 2012 she published an award-winning children’s book, Tadeo TurtleHer new book, The Kingdom of Thrim, was published in June 2016.

She podcasts on Hope Stream Radio, an Internet radio station. Her talk Growing Through God’s Word can be heard each Tuesday.

Janis loves to tell others about what God has done and is doing in her life.

Janis can be reached on her website, Growing Through God’s Word and on FacebookPinterest and Twitter.

Please join her at Word of God Speak Facebook Group to learn more about memorizing Scripture through art.

Check out the bookstore:




Please click to get 2 Free Ebooks, Living Life – One Word at a Time and Five Ways God Changed Me.

bale of turtles

Torn Tadeo Turtle – Arts for Kids

Torn Tadeo Turtle – Arts for Kids

I had such fun this afternoon. This is a craft that I had my children do at school in art lessons. It is great for dexterity, colour, and placement of objects. This week I am showing you how to make a picture called Torn Tadeo Turtle. Of course this can be extended for any picture.

Torn Tadeo Turtle


      • Construction paper (lots of colours); card making paper, wall paper
      • Glue – I used a glue stick
      • That’s it.


Teach your child how to tear the paper. With little ones just getting a shape at all is excellent. As your child gets older he will be able to manipulate his/her fingers and get even the tiniest shape made.

Torn Tadeo - learning to tear the paper

Start with a background colour – anything you want – I started with a neutral beige.

Torn Tadeo Turtle - start tearing the shapes

Begin making the shapes; make lots of shapes for the foreground and background

Place the shapes where you think you might like them. Have you got enough shapes? Don’t worry as you can make more after you start gluing them down.

Torn Tadeo Turtle - lay the pieces down

I would suggest starting with the background and do not place your main object until the very end. I didn’t do this and sometimes it was hard to lift the edges to place the shapes underneath.

Then put your main shape down and finish it. Don’t forget to put the cap on the glue.

Done – your masterpiece. Torn Tadeo Turtle.

Torn Tadeo Turtle

Please check out more about my book Tadeo Turtle on Tadeo’s Page. You will find more activities at the back of my book. And a 24-page extension activities is available if you ask.

Tadeo Turtle by Janis Cox

For more craft ideas from He Cares for Us go to Crafts for Kids.


Creative Saturdays – Paper Plate (Styrofoam) Tadeo Turtle

Creative Saturdays – Paper Plate (Styrofoam) Tadeo Turtle

This week I will be teaching Sunday School at a neighbouring church. I will read Tadeo Turtle, do some singing and a little storytelling. We will be making the paper plate Tadeo.

Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle

There are many ways to make a paper plate turtle.

Today I am using the following materials:

        • two small styrofoam plates (paper plates are great too)
        • tissue paper of a variety of colours (get reds, yellows, purples, greens,)
        • construction paper or card stock paper (any colour)
        • scissors
        • white glue
        • stapler
        • googly eyes
        • crayons or markers or paint


Cut the tissue paper. I didn’t have many colours on hand but these seemed to work fine. I cut it in squares but it doesn’t matter. Cut any shapes you want.

Tissue Paper for paper plate Tadeo Turtle

Place the tissue paper one piece at a time on the shell. Overlap. Cover the whole shell.

Cover the plate with tissue

Cut out the head, 4 legs, and a tail.

Draw and cut out the shapes

Colour the head, legs and tail.

Cut out the parts and colour them.

Staple the appendages to the bottom shell. Add googly eyes.

Staple the parts to the body

Place the top shell over the bottom shell and staple the turtle together.  Mark the toes on each foot.

Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle

Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle

Here is another turtle that I made while attending “Turtle Day” at an art gallery. Let the children’s imagination take over for shapes, colour and detail.

PP Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle 2

Have fun.

Please check out more about my book Tadeo Turtle on Tadeo’s Page. You will find more activities at the back of my book. And a 24-page curriculum is available if you ask.

If you want to purchase a signed copy of Tadeo Turtle click on the Paypal icon. It will direct you to the PayPal site where you can choose PayPal or a credit card.

Or on and

Tadeo Turtle by Janis Cox

My newest book will be released soon. The Kingdom of Thrim for ages 5 and up.

Check out more at Books by Janis

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CRAFTING SATURDAYS – Soap Carving Tadeo Turtle

Crafting Saturday – Soap Carving Tadeo Turtle

Today we are looking at how to make a turtle from a bar of soap. Let’s take a look at how to make Soap Carving Tadeo Turtle.

Soap Carving Tadeo Turtle

I have always had the desire to do carving. From the time of a youngster I loved to play with mud – yup, mud. I would form and shape animals. Today we are going to make a soap carving Tadeo Turtle.

When we first came to Mesa, Arizona I joined a pottery class. There we learned to form objects. It was called slab building. I enjoyed it. But watercolour called me and I changed back to that artistic endeavour.

But I have never tried sculpting something.

Today I thought I would try making Tadeo from a piece of soap. I used Ivory Soap – it carves very easily.

I only used a spoon to do the basic sculpting.

In order to finish the details I used a paring knife. I would advise caution for small children. Using a pumpkin carver or a small butter knife would be better.

To finish the final details I used a toothpick. A toothbrush cleans out the debris.

Here are the directions:

1. Go slowly (soap can break).

Soap carving Tadeo Turtle

A bar of soap

2. Draw a quick sketch of what you want your final object to look like.

Soap Carving Tadeo Turtle

3. Do the overall shape first. Then start to carve out the details.

soap carving tadeo turtle - beginning stages

Making the shape of the turtle

4. Add the details to the soap sculpture – a turtle starts to appear..

Adding details - soap carving

Add the details.

5.  Round the edges with your fingers.

Almost finished soap carving

Tadeo is almost finished

6. The finished product – your own carved soap Tadeo Turtle is ready to paint.

Soap Finished Tadeo

7. The Final Product

Soap Carving Tadeo Turtle

I would love to have children’s pictures of their treasured Tadeo designs.


To purchase Tadeo Turtle click on the Paypal and either pay with Paypal or your credit card.



do not be anxiousdo not be anxious

Linking up with

Homeschool Creations

Plastic Bag Printmaking

Creative Saturdays – Plastic Bag Printmaking

Today I use a plastic bag to make prints and create an underwater scene in watercolour. I have called this Plastic Bag Printmaking.

I loved the printing process when I used the styrofoam print to make a picture. This time I had read about using a plastic bag. – Please check out Alisa Burke Redefine Creativity. So I said, “Why not?”.

At one point I tried to use waxed paper but this did not work as well. I only used grocery plastic bags. You could also use the baggies (Ziploc idea), as Alisa did.

plastic bag Printmaking

I learned a few things while doing this Plastic Bag Printmaking:

  1. Don’t use too much water unless you want a smeared look (and that may be what you want).
  2. Wait a few moments before putting the paper over the wet paint.
  3. Press down when you want the print to look like what you put on the plastic.
  4. Rub back and forth when you want to smear the paint around.


  • Brushes
  • Watercolour paints
  • Water
  • Plastic bag, opened and cut
  • watercolour paper


Open the plastic bag. On the plastic put the paint – in shapes, blobs, lines. You can use one colour at a time; or you can mix them right on the plastic.

plastic bag Printmaking

Place a piece of watercolour paper over the paint. Press down or rub depending on what type of effect you want. The picture below shows what happens when I rubbed back and forth and the paint was very wet, too. You get a smear of colours.

plastic bag Printmaking

Repeat as often as you want around your page.

If you want a design as well, get a clean sheet of plastic. I drew on the plastic with pencil, then marker the design I wanted (the sea turtle). Then I traced over the lines in paint. A thinner brush would have given a cleaner turtle.

plastic bag Printmaking

The picture below shows both the printed sea turtle design as well as the leaves with drier paint on the plastic, and pressing down and not rubbing.

plastic bag Printmaking


plastic bag Printmaking

Finish the picture. I loved how this worked.

Try plastic bag printmaking and tell me how it turned out.

plastic bag Printmaking - Sea Turtle by Janis Cox


Don’t forget to send me your child’s pictures. Send them to Janis Cox and I will put them up in the Children’s Gallery.

Please check out more about my book Tadeo Turtle on Tadeo’s Page. You will find more activities at the back of my book. And a 24-page curriculum is available if you ask.


Please check out more about my book Tadeo Turtle on Tadeo’s Page. You will find more activities at the back of my book. And a 24-page extension activties is available if you ask.

Tadeo Turtle by Janis Cox

For more craft ideas from He Cares for Us go to Crafts for Kids.


I shared at Sharing Saturday:

SharingSaturdayoption2-150 photo SharingSaturdayoption2-150_zpsba88f805.jpg

Creative Saturdays: A Tadeo Turtle Showcase – 30 Art and Crafts

Creative Saturdays: A Tadeo Turtle Showcase – 30 Art and Crafts

I have had a ton of fun doing art activities and crafts about turtles this year. But I have come to the end of my ideas. I will be leaving this for now. I might return when I finish my next book.

Here is a listing of all the activities that have been posted about turtles this year.

Soap Carved Tadeo Turtle

Soap Carved Tadeo Turtle

Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle

Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle

Paper Plate Tadeo Turtle

Egg Carton Tadeo Turtle

Egg Carton Tadeo Turtle finished

Felt Board Tadeo Turtle

Felt Board Tadeo Turtle

Puppet Tadeo Turtle

Puppet TAdeo Turtle

Torn Tadeo Turtle

Torn Tadeo TurtleCrayon Resist Tadeo Turtle

Crayon Resist Tadeo Turtle

Pointillism Tadeo Turtle

Pointillism Tadeo Turtle

Oobleck Tadeo Turtle

Oobleck Tadeo Turtle Hardened

Stuffed Tadeo Turtle

st stuffed-tadeo-turtle

Woven Tadeo Turtle

Woven Tadeo Turtle

Finished Woven Tadeo Turtle – by Janis Cox

Foam Print Tadeo Turtle


Sand Tadeo Turtle


Handprint Tadeo Turtle


Toothbrush Tadeo Turtle


Playdough Tadeo Turtle

playdough - finished Tadeo Turtle playdough

Mixed Media Tadeo Turtle

Mixed Media Tadeo Turtle

Stencil Tadeo Turtle

Stencil Tadeo Turtle

Burnished Tadeo Turtle

Burnished Tadeo Turtle

Fingerpaint Tadeo Turtle

Fingerpaint Tadeo Turtle

Vegetable Painting Tadeo Turtle

Vegetable Paintings

Stained Glass Watercolour Tadeo Turtle

Stained Glass WAtercolour tadeo Turtle

Tissue Paper Tadeo Turtle

Tissue Paper Tadeo Turtle

Oil Pastel Resist Tadeo Turtle

Oil Pastel Resist Tadeo Turtle

Foam Print Tadeo Turtle part 2

Foam Print Tadeo Turtle part 2

Blowing Watercolour Tadeo Turtle

Blowing Watercolour tAdeo Turtle

Sponge Painting Tadeo Turtle


Plastic Bag Tadeo Turtle

Plastic Bag Tadeo Turtle

Stained Glass Tadeo Turtle

Stained Glass Tadeo turtle

Paper and Glue Tadeo Turtle

Paper and Glue TAdeo Turtle

To find out more about Tadeo Turtle please click on his picture.

Tadeo turtle

Tadeo – It’s Me!

Continue to link your arts and crafts posts until the end of the year.