mindful living, effortless style


Life-Size Building Blocks

Happy Monday everyone. I’m pretty thrilled to be able to announce today that Allison of All for the Boys will also be joining the MPMK team as a regular contributor. If you’ve been paying attention, then you already know I’m a fan (featured her here and here). As you’ll see from today’s post, her ideas are spectacularly fun but also remarkably simple. You really won’t be able to resist trying them out at home.



It’s no secret that we love forts, tents, and hideaways over at All for the Boys so I am super excited to share this simple tutorial on how to build a structure out of newspaper.


The way you create the structure can be modified depending on the age of your kids. Mine are 7 and 9 so they did this all by themselves.  All you need is some newspaper as well as some tape and/or a stapler.



Take two sheets of newspaper, lay them out flat and start rolling it from one corner. The tighter the roll the more support you’ll have. My boys aren’t tight rolling masters yet but they did pretty well for their first time!



Secure the end with a small piece of tape



Now make as many rolls as your kids will allow. An ideal amount would be around 48 but I think we stopped around 25 or so. Next, you’ll be making triangles with your newspaper rolls. Tape or staple the ends together to form a triangle.  Click through for the rest of the details.


Create as many triangles as you can with your newspaper rolls.

Finally, you’ll secure each triangle to each other creating whatever size structure you want! My boys and I came up with this.

Your structure size will depend on how many triangles you made. Just make sure you have enough for the roof which will provide the final stability for your fort.  You can secure the “joints” with some extra staples or tape to be sure it doesn’t move around too much.



The rest is up to their imaginations!



The structure should even be sturdy enough for a blanket on top!  Either way it’s a pretty fun activity to do with your kids that they will be proud of and enjoy!



P.S. Looking for more ways to simplify and connect with your family?

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Valley Learning Center June 4, 2012 at 5:24 pm

This is a great & fun idea out of old newspaper. Thank you for sharing!!! I’m gonna try this in class as a teach working with others. Love it!!!


Anonymous June 4, 2012 at 6:13 pm

I can’t wait to do this with Will… Saving it for a rainy day! -kat


Oltreverso June 5, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Ma che bella idea!!!!! Grazie!


Kristin June 10, 2012 at 2:28 pm

If you use a doweling rod to wrap the newspapers around, it can help the kids get a tighter roll, and incidently, a stronger structure!


Anonymous June 13, 2012 at 6:47 am

I love this idea!!!


Tansy Dolls June 14, 2012 at 6:29 am

This is such a fabulous idea!


Anonymous June 16, 2012 at 7:15 pm

This is fantastic! My nephews are here for the summer and I’m excited to this with them! Thanks for sharing!


Marta Wakula-Mac June 27, 2012 at 8:05 pm

great idea! love it!


Anonymous June 27, 2012 at 8:16 pm

I own a print shop and have BOXES of 48″ thick wall 3″ cardboard tubes. FORT TIME!


Shalini June 28, 2012 at 12:11 pm

What a cool idea. I absolutely love it!


Lynda September 26, 2012 at 9:07 pm

Fantastic idea my boys age 6 & 9 have had such fun making their own. We used pencils to get them started rolling!


Aun Koh November 2, 2012 at 5:17 am

Made this today. Very, VERY cool. My son loved it. But it didn’t last more than an hour as he tried swinging from the “bars” and pretty much crushed it. :(


Debbye November 9, 2012 at 6:40 pm

Can’t wait to try this with my son!


The Monko January 6, 2013 at 2:04 pm

this is absolutely awesome. I usually leave the fort building to Hublet but I think you may have converted me


catherine ferat February 2, 2013 at 9:26 am

Very good and simple idea to achieve with a child


caren April 5, 2013 at 10:38 pm

I did something like this in High School. We were in teams and rolled up papers and had to build a structure as tall as we could. The tallest that stood won.


Madison June 12, 2013 at 5:16 pm

This is awesome! I’m only nine and I think this is the awesomest fort I have ever seen!


Steph (MPMK Founder) June 12, 2013 at 7:52 pm

Thanks for commenting Madison – glad you like it and hope you try it!


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