Radial Origami Suncatchers (5th)

Figuring out the first art project of the year with my kids is always a daunting task for me. This is why I was so excited when I found this pin of suncatchers on Pinterest (links back to the blog Make, Do, Play). I really wanted to do something that my students would have fun with and could easily be started late if new students joined my class throughout the week (I see mine for an entire week.. then rotate to the next class). My students absolutely LOVE origami and even though I'm not particularly skilled at it, the folds in this project were very simple.. so it was a easy choice!
I started this project by reviewing both linear and radial symmetry with my students. We talked about the difference between the two.. then sorted a number of images based on their type of symmetry. Once I was sure my students had it down, I moved on to demonstrating two folds that they could use for the project. I folded two different examples on my document camera, while my 5th graders followed along on scrap paper.

After showing them the two folds, they decided which one of the two radial suncatcher designs they wanted to create... then picked out their colors. I originally intended for this to be a color wheel lesson.. but you need to have 8 different colored papers for these designs and not 6 like a standard color wheel has. So instead they had free reign on their color choices (either way they were getting some color mixing lesson). **The paper we used was a semi-transparent colored origami paper .
It think these really turned out beautifully and they were very simple to make! On Friday I hung them up in the cafeteria windows.. they look stunning in the morning light! :)


  1. These are beautiful! Thanks for sharing. Do you just glue the pieces together?

  2. like all the arty stuff.
    you are a very creative person. :)

  3. what glue? Elmers? and how did you lay them out to dry?

  4. These are wonderful!! I would love to know the steps for gluing these together, would you be willing to share how you glued them?

  5. Your ideas are inspiring!
    Can you tell me any more details about the semi transparent paper. I've checked online at Michael's Craft store and I don't see anything like it.
    What company makes it?

    1. It's been a few years since I ordered it.. so I'm not sure. But there is a link in the blog post to a semi-transparent origami paper.