We made these super easy jigsaw photo puzzles from pictures and magazine cuttings we had lying around at home. Baby photos and holiday snaps are always good conversation starters with our children, which of course is great for enhancing vocabulary and social skills.
After personalizing the photos with some writing and quick sketches, we turned the puzzles into fun gifts for our family members. Here’s how we did it.
1. Photos – you can use any size or orientation that you like
2. Craft or popsicle sticks
5. Decorations of choice – paint, washi tape, stickers
Make a Personalized Popsicle Stick Puzzle
Step One: Personalize your photos with a message or drawing. Our jigsaw puzzles were going to be gifts, so we added some cute drawings including the sun and flowers.
We found that black permanent markers and neon gel pens worked really well on the photo surface. Make sure you let the ink dry completely before moving on to further steps.
Step Two: We decorated our popsicle sticks next. We painted some with neon paint and wrapped others with washi tape. The washi tape wrapping required a little bit of patience, but was great work for strengthening and co-ordinating those little fingers.
You could stick some cool stickers onto your popsicle sticks, or even number them for some counting practice.
Step Three: Next, we arranged the popsicle sticks onto the back of the photographs. We left enough space between the craft sticks to fit our scissors. If you have older children, you could place the sticks closer together and use a blade or sharp knife and a ruler to slice the jigsaw sections.
Once you have the sticks arranged to your liking, glue them into place. We found that PVA glue worked nicely for this. Again, make sure that your glue is dry before moving on to further steps.
Step Four: Simply cut or slice your photo into strips. You are now ready to use your photo jigsaw puzzle.
Step Five: An optional step is to wrap the jigsaws for gift giving. We raided our craft cupboard for different materials and the kids came up with some simple and fun presentations.