The story of Jack and the Beanstalk is a tale of adventure, bravery, magic and redemption that has delighted children for hundreds of years. The story's elements of enchantment, which include magic beans, a giant's castle, golden eggs and a singing harp, captivates children both verbally and visually. With basic craft supplies and materials, you can create decorations that transform a room into Jack's magical world and bring the fairy tale to life for a birthday bash or your child's bedroom.
1. Beans and Beanstalks
Young Jack's misadventure begins when he trades his family's cow for a pouch of magic beans. To make your own sacks of magic beans, decorate small brown paper bags with vine and leaf patterns drawn with colored markers. Fill the bags with large dry beans, such as lima or fava beans, and tie the bags closed with lengths of brown yarn. Scatter additional beans on the tabletop and in the corner of the room where you will also position the beanstalk. Cut vines and leaves from green construction paper. Tape vines to the walls in one corner of the room to create the trunk of the beanstalk, and then add branches and leaves. Fasten additional vines and leaves along the walls so the beanstalk surrounds the room.
2. Castle in the Clouds
The giant's castle sits high atop the beanstalk above the clouds. In your home, a small castle decoration hung from the ceiling creates the illusion of distance. Paint a shoebox and four cardboard tubes with gray acrylic paint. Assemble the pieces with glue or double-stick tape, using the shoebox for the main part of the castle and the cardboard tubes for towers. Draw stones, windows, a gate and other details on the castle with black permanent marker. Cut crenellated edges into the tops of the towers. Glue white polyester batting to the bottom of the castle. Use polyester filament to hang the castle from the ceiling above the beanstalk. To create more clouds, attach poufs of batting to the ceiling with double-stick tape.
3. Goose and Golden Eggs
The goose that laid golden eggs was one of the giant's most prized possessions -- and one of the objects of Jack's quest. A white long-necked gourd can be transformed into a graceful goose. Glue on an orange paper beak, black-bead eyes and white feathers for wings. For the goose's magic eggs, paint foam eggs purchased at a craft store with gold metallic acrylic paint. Use several coats to cover the eggs completely and create a rich finish. Arrange some of the eggs in a straw or twig nest and scatter additional golden eggs on the tabletop and around the room.
4. Magic Harp
The giant's castle is home to an enchanted harp that plays by itself. To make a replica of the magical instrument, cut a harp frame shape from corrugated cardboard. Paint the frame with several coats of gold acrylic paint. Use a hole punch to create a row of evenly spaced holes along the top and bottom of the harp frame. Cut lengths of polyester filament or gold yarn for the harp's strings. Tie one end of each string to a hole on the frame top and the corresponding hole on the frame's bottom. Use gold glitter glue to embellish the harp frame with decorative swirls.
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