This cardboard laptop is one of my all-time favorite DIY gifts for kids! It’s simple to make, and ours still gets pulled out years later!
This cardboard laptop with interchangeable screens was the hit present at Johnny’s fourth birthday party, easily eclipsing the talking bear. I can’t take any credit from it – it was made by my brother B – who, incidentally, has apparently been given credit for the gifts Mike and I gave Johnny as well! That’s what happens when you bring the most awesome present!
How to Make a Cardboard Laptop for Pretend Play
The design is very simple – two sheets of cardboard for the top, one for the bottom. The sheets of cardboard are roughly 9×12 inches each. One of the top sheets is identical to the one you see on the bottom; the other one has a screen cut out using an X-acto knife. The top sheets are open at the sides so that the kids can make new screens and slide them in and out. Clear Duck Tape holds it all together. Simple perfection!
MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.
22 thoughts on “Awesome Homemade Gift for Kids: Cardboard Laptop”
I want to try this and slide a dry erase board in the screen part! You can run off a keyboard from Google images.
That’s a great idea! Thanks for the keyboard printoff idea, too.
This looks like something my brother would totally make too. Awesome.
Aren’t brothers the best? :)
Happy new year
This is fab, such a brilliant idea. Will have to give it a go in 2012.
Love your laptop. So cooool! Have added it to Box Get Crafty!
Thanks for sharing on Kids Get Crafty!
That’s an awesome computer! I remember making cardboard computers as a kid as well–sometimes aided by B. :-)
What a fun idea! I’m always surprised at what my kids LOVE. I may try this with my kids. :)
My class would love this!
LOL! Abby made herself a “laptop” once with a Children’s Place box that flipped open. She drew in the boxes for the letters and numbers too. It was quite funny.
What a neat idea. Your entire family is so awesomely creative!
My kids would love that! I think we need to make one this afternoon…
Love that you can slide different papers in and out! So clever.
My kids would love that too!
Ah – so this is what engineers make with cardboard. Brilliant! This is the same awesome brother who gave you the three boxes? I like him! A lot!
Yes, it is! He is a WONDERFUL brother!
So fabulous!! And this would be a wonderful place to use one of those stick-on dry erase papers, too.
Those would be perfect for this!
That is a fun idea! I can foresee all sorts of ideas.
I love his laptop! It is extremely well constructed, which is to be expected from someone with two mechanical engineering degrees from Stanford.
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