Monday, May 23, 2016

Tipi Tri-rama

I have been making quite a few of these lately.  Now the tipi is an old project of mine but I realized I hadn't posted how to make the background.

This tri-rama has many uses or as a teacher told me this week, "This is a game changer".

Here are student examples from this week.


- tipi, use this post of mine to guide you
- file folder letter sized
- ruler and scissors
- oil pastels
- disk tempera paint
- white glue
- some moss and pebbles
- modelling clay in yellow. orange, and red


I like to use file folders for these tri-ramas but you could also use manila tag or pasteboard.

Using a ruler draw a line down the tab on the right side when the folder is open.

Cut along the line cutting the tab off.

Inside the folder there is a box, using the bottom of this box draw a line.

Essentially we are making a square so if your folder does not have a box just measure until you a square.

Fold 1 corner across to another corner.

Do the same with the opposite corners so it looks like this.

Choose one corner, (only 1) and cut to the centre.

This enables the bottom sections to overlap and form your tri-rama.

But before we put it together we want to complete our background.

The students drew their backgrounds first in pencil and then went over those pencil lines with oil pastels.

On one of the bottom flaps we made marks to look like grass.

We then painted with disk tempera.

This is mine fully painted.  You only need to do one section on the bottom.

Before I glue I re do those folds so my sides will stand up nice and straight.

Spread some glue on the unpainted flap.

Fold the painted flap over top the one with the glue and press down to seal them together.

We glued in some moss.

Glued a ring of pebbles for a fire pit,

and a bit of modelling clay for the fire.

Add your tipi and you have a great little tri-rama.



  1. Thank you so much for this Gail. Making the tipis and then the tri-rama kept my 3 girls happily busy for hours and instigated new games afterwards - they absolutely loved it!