Top 12 Best Origami Kits & Books for Children: Keep your little ones occupied for hours creatively instead of screen time
If you’re looking for creative things to do instead of sitting in front of the TV or staring at screens consuming mindless content all the time? Pick up one of these exciting origami kits and books and encourage your children to be creative and learn problem solving along the way.
As a little boy, I remember sitting next to my grandma, watching her hands intently as she magically folded beautiful cranes from plain, flat sheets of paper. In those days, there was no Internet or tutorial videos to follow. She did it all by memory. To transform something as basic as a sheet of paper into a lovely three-dimensional model was mind-boggling for my young brain to say the least.
Origami vs Screens
These days, with modern communication technologies and screens all around us, we are constantly bombarded with images and sounds. When was the last time you actually sat down to create something? Here’s an idea, the next time you are stuck at home and are struggling to find something creative things to do with the little ones, try paper crafting. Use one of these origami kits and books and turn your kids into paper crafting warriors.
Origami is the art of paper folding. While it may have originated from Japan, it is easy to see how it can quickly catch on among children. The act of creating something imaginative and creative out of a simple piece of paper can be so inspiring and satisfying. With each step they are building upon something exciting, participating in a process that will allow them to ultimately reap the sweet rewards of their labour. A finished model that they can touch, hold, see and even play with. You might even save some money and help the environment, by not buying tacky plastic toys. Help them make their own.
Top 12 Best Origami Kits and Books for Children
Some of these are not just books, but complete kits that include among other things; instructions, coloured paper, storage box, stickers and even child proof scissors.
- Paper Monsters: 50 Cool Papertoys You Can Make Yourself! by Brian Castleforte
- Easy Origami over 30 simple projects by John Montroll BS
- Origami for Kids: 20 Projects to Make Plus 100 Papers to Fold by Mila Bertinetti Montevecchi
- My First Origami Kit: Origami Kit with Book, 60 Papers, 150 Stickers, 20 Projects by Joel Stern BS
- Gamenote Colorful Kids Origami Kit 54 Projects AC
- Origami Extravaganza! Folding Paper, a Book, and a Box 38 Projects BS
- Papertoy Glowbots: 46 Glowing Robots You Can Make Yourself! 46 Projects by Brian Castleforte
- Animal Origami for the Enthusiast: 25 Models by John Montroll
- Japanese Origami Kit for Kids: 12 Original Origami Projects 12 Models by Michael G. LaFosse
- Genuine Japanese Origami, Book 1: 33 Models by Jun Maekawa
- Genuine Japanese Origami, Book 2: 34 Models by Jun Maekawa
- Japanese Paper Toys Kit: Origami Paper Toys that Walk, Jump, Spin, Tumble and Amaze! 24 Models by Andrew Dewar
Let’s jump right in.
1. Paper Monsters: 50 Cool Papertoys You Can Make Yourself! by Brian Castleforte
Number of Models: 50
Paper Included: YES (pre-scored, easy-to-fold designer templates, just pop-out, fold and glue)
Not quite origami, but folding paper toys all the same. These fully coloured ready prints with perforated outlines lets the little one pop their monster out, fold and glue them together to create fun three-dimensional characters. The book includes 50 cool paper toys created by 25 of the best paper toy designers from around the world. With that many models, ti is bound to offer hours of fun creating and later playing with these paper toys.
Number of Models: 30
Paper Included: NO
Now back to the basics. It is easy to see how this can be a best seller. It is a must-have first origami book for beginners. Pique their enthusiasm by introducing over 30 simple projects to start with. These easy to follow models will give them the basic skills they need to take on more challenging models later. However, you are going to need some supplies and we recommend colourful folding paper and to make life easier, pick up square and rectangular origami quality paper online when ordering the book.
3. Origami for Kids: 20 Projects to Make Plus 100 Papers to Fold by Mila Bertinetti Montevecchi
Number of Models: 20
Paper Included: YES (100 papers)
Origami does not have to be dry and boring. With included design papers, both coloured and black and white to colour in yourself, your kids can sink their teeth right in and get their models ready in no time.
All in all, there are twenty engaging yet easy to make projects to choose from. Pick the bunnies, crabs, bugs, dogs and more for hours of fun filled and creative time. To make it even easier for 5 to 7 years olds, the fold lines are printed right on the design papers so you can leave them to it.
It doesn’t stop there, you will find in the papers, QR codes that you can scan with your mobile devices to take you instantly to video tutorials if you are stuck with any of the models. These easy to follow videos will take you through the process step by step, demonstrating visually how to complete each of the different projects. Thoroughly an excellent book for kids.
The paper is sturdy, but folds easily, and makes nice creases and points. The instructions are clear and fairly easy to follow, but if you are unsure how to do a step, simply scan the QR code on the first instruction page of a project, and watch a quick video example of the project step by step.
4. My First Origami Kit: Origami Kit with Book, 60 Papers, 150 Stickers, 20 Projects by Joel Stern [BS]
Number of Models: 20
Paper Included: YES (60 papers, 150 stickers)
An award-winning book and the preferred choice for newbies, especially the little ones, Stern’s My First Origami Kit opens up the world of origami and folding crafts to your kids. It comes complete with specially designed origami paper for 22 different projects. The papers are decorated on both sides based on the subject e.g. feathers for ducks, metal plates for airplanes, scales for cobra and so on.
Other models include birds, beasts, vehicles and animals (Penny Penguin, Sea Surfer, Caramel Bear, Magic Box and Hugo Pig). When done with the project, your kids can start an origami zoo. Our favourite is the teddy bear that talks (not literally) when you open and close its arms. That’s not all, also included are 150 detailed stickers to decorate the projects. Finish off your animals, birds and beasts with eyes, ears, paws and more.
Also from Joel Stern, My First Origami Animals Kit with 60 Papers, over 180 Stickers and 17 Projects
5. Gamenote Colorful Kids Origami Kit 54 Projects
Number of Models: 54
Paper Included: YES (118 double sided origami papers)
If a craft kit is what you are after, especially for younger children than the Gamenote Origami Kit is what you need. There are a few of these further down the list. They are kit first rather than book first. Included with the kit are folding paper and instructional booklet. The crafting paper are printed on both sides and in full colour. Together, kids can put together 54 different origami models. As for the instructions, these are illustrated in colour to make it even easier to follow. Cut straight to the fun with this origami kit and build vivid and colourful creations.
6. Origami Extravaganza! Folding Paper, a Book, and a Box by Tuttle Publishing [BS]
Number of Models: 38
Paper Included: YES (162 high quality origami papers)
Ready to fold origami papers are including in this kit. Simply take them out of the box, choose from one of the 38 different projects from the book and you aer on your way. It contains both traditional and modern origami models and cover a wide range of topics from flowers and animals to containers and celebratory designs. Suitable for both adults and kids, they book contains clear step-by-step instructions and easy to follow diagrams. Projects include simple swan, flamingo, dandelion blossom, pine tree, cup, classic box with lid, fox puppet, samurai helmet and more.
7. Papertoy Glowbots: 46 Glowing Robots You Can Make Yourself! 46 projects by Brian Castleforte
Number of Models: 46
Paper Included: YES (pre-scored, easy to fold designer templates; pop-out, fold and glue)
Yes, we agree that the use of glow-in-the-dark stickers (included with the book) is gimmicky, but anything that gets the kids off their screens and doing something constructive, we are all for it. The Papertoy Blogbots comes with 46 different robots to build. What is more, when completed, these robots can also be lit safely with flashlights, battery operated Christmas tree lights or battery operated tea lights, making them super fun. All the little ones have to do is pop the card out, fold and glue the papertoy. The cards have colour and exciting prints on them to complete the paper toy models.
8. Animal Origami for the Enthusiast: Step-by-Step Instructions in Over 900 Diagrams 25 Original Models by John Montroll
Number of Models: 25
Paper Included: NO
On a slightly more challenging level, here are 25 paper animal sculptures designed by renowned origami expert John Montroll. The book features 25 intricately detailed paper folding projects. The results, life-like animals including angelfish, walrus, eagle, turtle, frog, antelope, lobster, tyrannosaurus, more. Fully illustrated step-by-step instructions and hundreds of diagrams guide help you get those 25 exciting projects on the way.
9. Japanese Origami Kit for Kids: 12 Original Origami Projects 12 Models by Michael G. LaFosse
Number of Models: 12
Paper Included: YES (92 colourful folding paper)
Written for children, LaFosse helps them explore some Japanese classics as well as the more advanced modular origami. The book is easy to follow and simple enough to get kids started. Outputs include Japanese good luck boxes, lotus blossoms, koi fish, cranes and more. Pick from beginners to intermediate skill levels and use the included origami paper to finish your project. These papers are double sided and come in a dozen different patterns and colours.
10. Genuine Japanese Origami, Book 1: 33 Mathematical Models Based Upon (the square root of) 2 by Jun Maekawa
Number of Models: 33
Paper Included: NO
Follow Jun Maekawa in this first book translated from Japan that looks folding creatures great and small. Using simple geometric and mathematical principles, you can build insects, plants, trees, animals and even mythical creatures like the Chinese Phoenix and Pegasus. Our favourites are the insects and sea creatures. These include dragonfly, floral egg crab, golden beetle, praying mantis, tortoise, swallowtail butterfly, silver toad and fish.
11. Genuine Japanese Origami, Book 2: 34 Mathematical Models Based Upon (the square root of) 2 by Jun Maekawa
Number of Models: 34
Paper Included: NO
Book 2 in the series by Jun Maekawa explores cubes, towers, and geometric shapes. Fold practical origami creations that you can use in your everyday life like plate, octagonal wrapper, money gift envelope, trash bin, diagonally opening gift boxes, cube masu box and more. Or, explore the different structures you can build with paper like the standard house, L-shaped house, houses with a different styled roof, tower, and spiral cube. Once you have mastered basic model house building, you will probably want to start your very own paper village. They are truly a blend of art and science.
12. Japanese Paper Toys Kit: Origami Paper Toys that Walk, Jump, Spin, Tumble and Amaze! by Andrew Dewar
Number of Models: 24
Paper Included: YES (16 pre-cut cardstock characters, forty double sided folding and construction papers in two different sizes)
This book contains 24 different projects, but it goes beyond just origami crafts and folded paper models. They are uniquely designed to be moveable, great as paper toys. Children will love these cuty little paper creations when they wiggle, walk, tumble, shuffle and spin. To assemble (or fold), simply punch out those perforated cards, fold according to the instructions and enjoy hours of fun with your creations. Projects include sumo wrestlers, bobbing bird, jumping frog, ladybug and more.
Number of Models: over 100
Paper Included: YES (various papers, colouring pens, scissors and box)
Kits include double sided coloured paper, 12 plain origami paper, magic colour pens, scissors and box.
Star Wars Origami by Karol Kafarski
Number of models: 10