How to make a mobile phone


The 2 year old is currently obsessed with phones and routinely asks to call anyone he has spoken to before on the phone at times when I’d prefer him to be sleeping. He has a few favourites but it seems he isn’t that fussy as long as sleeping is delayed and a phone is his.

I saw the idea originally on and leaning heavily on their example I decided to make him one of his own.

I enlisted the help of the nearly 5 year old and the 8 year old and it was a surprising success all round.

The 5 year old and I did the painting, it was a simple matter of sploshing paint everywhere, at which he is exceptionally talented, over qualified some might say. We used empty panadol boxes as the phone base. Then while we waited for it to dry we discussed who we might like to call and searched the internet and our personal photo stores for pictures.

We chose; a police logo, a fire service logo, pictures of myself and husband, all the children and a few of the favourite friends that we get asked to call. We cropped the pictures of the faces out and then we saved them all into one document. I printed them out on our black and white printer and got the boys to cut them out. I found some blu tack for putting on the backs so we could stick the different pictures onto the phone “display” area as they decided who they wanted to call.

Next we worked on our numbers and our call buttons.  I measured up and drew the little grids for the boys to fill in, my boxes and they added the digits. (I used 1cm square boxes per digit, so 3cm across the top by 4cm down.) We used red and green felt tipped pens to make the call buttons and cut those out ready to go. I just let them free draw those and cut out around them, the 5 year old needed me to draw his.

By this time our paint was dry and we could get to work adding the rice and taping the ends shut. I added a tablespoon of rice to each box and got the older of the two boys to tape up the ends with clear tape to keep the rice inside.

Finally we got out our glue and stuck on all the buttons. Then the boys got to work calling each other with their own little faces on each of the phones. We had a good couple of hours of crafty and drawing fun and the final product got maybe an hour of play time. For the boys in my house, I’m calling that a win.


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