I love birthdays. And let's face it--Kindergartners LOVE birthdays. I want to celebrate and make each of my students feel special without spending huge amounts of time or money. I used to buy the standard birthday crowns that every teacher store carries. But a few years ago, I found myself staring at an adorable 5 6-year old on her birthday with NO CROWN anywhere in my room. So being the resourceful kinder teacher that I am, I used scrap paper and a sentence strip a whipped one up on the fly. And you know what? It was adorable! Way cuter than the pre-made ones, and WAY cheaper, too!
So now I make all of my crowns. They are super easy--I promise!
I do it assembly-line style! First, I take an 8.5 x 11 inch piece of colored cardstock and cut three 3 x 8.5 inch strips. That will leave you with a 2 inch strip--save that! You'll need it to make candles. So you can get 3 crowns from one piece of cardstock. You can use a fancy scrapbook cutter, or you can eyeball it--honestly!
Next, I cut a piece of white cardstock into approximately 1.5 X 8.5 strips. Then I use my scissors and cut a squiggly line down the middle. Now I have 2 icing strips. So you can get about 13 or 14 icing strips from one piece of cardstock, depending on how thick you make them. (Again--don't measure! Just eyeball it).
Glue an icing strip on top of the cake.
Now--you know all of those 2-inch strips that you have leftover?
Glue the desired number on the back of the cake. Most of my kids will turn 6 during the school year.
Now we need some candle flames. I just use scrap orange or yellow paper and hand-cut teardrop shapes. (I fold my paper and cut several at a time). This is the most tedious part. I probably have a punch or Cricut cartridge with a shape that would work if I looked, but I'm too lazy. It's easy enough to cut them out while I watch mindless reality TV.
Glue the flames on the tops of the candles.
Now it's time to fancy the cakes up with markers...
and glitter glue!
Here's a finished crown. I put stripes on the candles and little dots and circles for sprinkles. And then I add lots of glitter (it's hard to see in this picture, but that crown is blinged out!) I don't actually add the names. I have no idea what my my children will be named next year. But I wanted you to see a finished example. Let's just hope I have an Ethan next year. Let's face it--chances are good.
Here you can see a girly example, too. I use all different colors, mostly because I get bored. I store the finished crowns (sans names) in a plastic tub. When it's someone's birthday, I pull one out, add his/her name, staple it to a sentence strip and staple it to their head. Just kidding. Do not actually staple it to their head.
I made all my crowns in a few hours last night (watching TV at the same time). It probably cost under $4. (I get my cardstock at Hobby Lobby. Repeat after me--Never buy it if it's not on sale. It's on sale this week! Joanne's also has cardstock packs.)
Tomorrow, I will show you how I make my birthday cards. In the meantime, I would love to hear how you make birthdays fun for the kids and cheap and easy for you. Link up or leave a comment!