Origami Animals and Origami Paper Review and How I Use It in My Classroom


Disclosure: I was sent these products in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

I am heading back to school for teacher training and the pre-school year prep. One of the things I always have in my room is origami paper and books. I use them with my geometry classes and pull them out during breaks and students come in to get some when they need a break or something to do with their hands. Today I am going to share with you an origami kit and three packs of origami paper which I will be adding to my classroom collection! We will start with the kit which is Fun with Origami Animals by Sam Ita. It is recommended for ages 6 to 10. I would say it is perfect for beginners no matter the age.

From the Publisher: 

Fold 40 different, cute paper animals in just a few easy steps!

This all-in-one origami kit is the perfect way to introduce kids to the joys of paper folding. It includes colorful papers and instructions for 40 different animal models.

Paper engineer Sam Ita has designed each of these adorable animals so they can be folded in 10 steps or less. The charming models in this kit include:
  • Penelope the Panda: an easy yet cuddly 3-step model
  • Bert the Bunny: a friendly 4-step character with 3D ears
  • Louis the Ladybug: a colorful model which comes together like magic!
  • And 37 more!
This kit includes a double-sided folding sheet for each animal--plus a full-color book with step-by-step folding instructions!

From Me:

I decided to try a few of the animals. I began with the rabbit since Hazel adopted a rabbit this month and was holding her while I was trying the kit. Then I made the cat since we have three. Then I love giraffes, so I had to try it. The hippopotamus looked so cool, so I wanted to try it too. You can see my four animals above. I found the instructions for the most part very clear and easy to follow. The papers that come with the kit are designed with fold lines and details of the animals. However, there is only one sheet for each animal so if you want to make more than one of any animal, you have to use other paper without all the details or the fold lines. 

The book gives instructions to make 40 animals. They range from bugs to mammals and more. Most of them are the face of the animal. You can see them all in the contents above. Many of the animals work well with the provided paper but may need some imagination to see the animal with other paper. That is my only complaint about this kit. Otherwise, it is a fun kit with easy products for beginners. With my geometry classes I like to assign an origami project where they have to do a video tutorial of an origami project using geometric terms. Some of my students struggle with origami so having some easy projects for them will be great!

I am going to share with you projects made with three different packs of origami paper. The three packs are Origami Paper 100 Sheets Modern Art, Origami Paper 500 Sheets Matrix Patterns, and Origami Paper 100 Sheets Sunflower Patterns. The Sunflower Patterns are in honor of Ukraine!!  All the packs are 6-inch double-sided papers. All of the projects come from a book I took out of the library. It is Making Origami Puzzles Step by Step by Michael G. LaFosse. 

The first project I tried was the Open Box Puzzle (you can see a tutorial on YouTube). I used three pieces of the Modern Art patterned paper. 

Mine doesn't stay closed as well as the one in the video which may be because of the size of paper. I would use glue if I was going to put something in it. The paper is easy to work with and good quality.

I also made the Eight-Sided Puzzle with the Modern Art Paper. Unfortunately, I cannot find an online tutorial for it, but it is an easy one. I had to glue the pieces together but besides that it was easy to make. It makes a great Christmas tree ornament if you add a string. 

Using the Modern Art and Matrix Pattern Paper, I made the Frame Puzzle. This one is very easy. It involves four sheets. Start by pinching the halfway in one direction (fold in half but only do a light crease on one side). Then fold the closest edge to that pinch. This fold represents one fourth of the page. Unfold your fourth. With the 1/4 on the bottom bring the top right corner to your fold line and the bottom left corner to the fold line. Then fold your one fourth back up. Do this for three more papers and slide them together. The back of the puzzle looks like this:

I love how this Matrix Print looks!! The first puzzle I tried with the Sunflower Paper was the Fortune Cookie Puzzle Box. You can follow this tutorial on YouTube. 

I love the colors of the Sunflower Patterns! The Fortune Cookie Puzzle Box looks really neat from different angles. Check out this one:

To make this one in geometry class I would use terms like midsegment, altitude, angle bisector, congruent triangles and such. This is why I love using origami in my geometry class! It is also great when working with fractions!

The final origami project is this neat Wreath Puzzle Box I made with the sunflower prints. This one definitely has midsegments, congruent triangles and more! It is made with eight sheets of paper. 

I hope you will check out this fun origami paper and kit. Tuttle Publishing is my go-to for origami supplies. The quality is high, and selection is great! Be sure to check it out!