Shell-ebrate International Turtle Day With 9 Cute Crafts

Sarah Hallam
Dec 12, 2023 By Sarah Hallam
Originally Published on May 11, 2020
Shell-ebrate International Turtle Day With 9 Cute Crafts
Age: 0-99
Read time: 5.4 Min

With International Turtle Day approaching on the 23rd May, why not celebrate our endangered friends with some fun crafts and activities the kids will love?

These turtle craft ideas are a fantastic way to help the kids understand the ways they can help raise awareness for these adorable creatures, and make some fun crafts in the process! These activities use things that you already have lying around the house, to make some great DIY turtle crafts.


1.Paper Plate Turtle

This cute craft uses paper plates to make fun turtle decorations you can hang up anywhere!

You will need:

Paper plates (1 per turtle)

Tissue paper/ crepe paper in varying colours.


Green Card

PVA glue

Green paint and a brush


(Optional) Glitter


Take your paper plate and place it upside down.

Paint the plate completely green (you may want to repeat this step so the paint is completely opaque). Let dry.

Cut out some hexagons from your tissue paper.

Arrange your hexagons on the back of the turtle. and glue down.

Cut some legs and a head out of green paper, glue underneath the 'shell' and draw a face on the head.

Add glitter and any other additions and enjoy your cute turtle craft!

2.Easy Peasy Egg Carton Turtle Pals

This craft is simple for younger kids to make, and they will have hours of fun playing with them after! Not to mention it's completely recycled!

You will need:

An empty egg carton

Green paint

Green pom-poms

Googly eyes


Green pipe cleaners

PVA Glue



Cut your egg carton into sections (each egg 'cup' will be a turtle shell).

Paint each section green. Let dry, and draw on a 'shell' pattern with a pen.

Glue two googly eyes on each pom-pom, and glue them on as the 'head' of the turtle.

Cut each pipe cleaner into four, and fold in two. Glue four under the egg carton shell, to make the turtle's legs.

There you have it! Your very own egg carton turtle.

3.Upcycled Plastic Bottle Turtle

This craft turtle is loads of fun to make, and uses recycled plastic bottles to make treasure-filled turtle shells!

You will need:

A green 2L plastic bottle


Green paper

Clear tape

Optional: Glitter, seashells, small rocks (you can cut these out of paper if you don't have any).


Carefully cut the bottom of the bottle horizontally, so only the ridged part is left.

Cut a turtle shape out of the green paper, and add your glitter, shells and other items to the middle of the turtle.

Pop the green bottle upside down on top to make the 'shell'.

Tape down, and draw a face on the turtle's head.

Enjoy your recycled glitter-filled turtle pal!

Top Tip: If you're loving the idea of recycled crafts, head over to our blog for more eco-friendly and sustainable ideas!

4.Hand Print Turtle Paintings


Fun and messy for the kids, this simple turtle craft can be reinterpreted to make all kinds of fun animal art!

You will need:


Green Paint

Pens and craft materials

Your hands!


On a plate, pour out some paint.

Dip your hand into the paint, making sure to coat the palm and fingers.

Carefully press down your painty hand on the paper.

Let dry, and create your turtle! The palm should make the shell, the thumb the head and fingers are legs. Let the kids imaginations run wild as they fill up the rest of their underwater paintings!

5.Pom-Pom Turtle Buddy

Kids of all ages will have lots of fun with this turtle craft, which requires just what you have leftover in the craft box!

You will need:

Green and yellow pom-poms, of varying sizes

Googly eyes

PVA glue


Simply take a large pom-pom, and glue four small ones on to make feet, and one medium pom-pom for the turtle's head. Glue on some googly eyes and you're all set! This pom-pom turtle is ideal to glue on to cards, paintings or to add to other crafts and activities.

6.Pipe Cleaner Turtle

This easy turtle craft is fun for kids to make- why not pair with an underwater drawing for these little guys to swim around on?

You will need:

Green and yellow pipe cleaners

A green pom-pom


Googly eyes

PVA glue


Take two full-length green pipe cleaners, and twist them together at one end.

Starting at one end, start to roll the pipe cleaners up to make a 'snail shell' like shape.

Once complete, push up the middle to make a 'dome'. This will be the shell of the turtle.

Cut your yellow pipe cleaners in half, and fold up to make the feet. Glue to the underside of the 'shell'.

Add a green pom-pom for a head, and glue on some googly eyes!

7.Potato Print Turtle Art

Potato Print Turtle Art

The classic potato print is a staple of kids crafts and activities. Not only is it cheap and easy, but it's also eco-friendly!

You will need:

A small uncooked potato, cut in half

Green Paint


Pens, glitter and any other art-making equipment you would like to use.


Pour out some green paint on to a plate.

Holding the potato by the round part, dip the flat surface into the paint.

Print the potato on to the paper, and repeat as many times as you like (one print will be one turtle).

Let dry.

Decorate! The potato print will be the shell of your turtle, so add a head, legs and decoration on the shell. 

Top Tip: Create your underwater landscape on the page before you do the printing, so your turtles will be in the foreground when you paint them on.

8.Painted Turtle Rock

This fun activity uses any rock you can find in the garden or elsewhere, to make a stunning turtle keepsake!

You will need:

A small round rock, washed and dried.

Green paint and brushes

Green paper


Pens, glitter, and paint to decorate.


Paint your whole rock green. Let dry.

Cut out some feet and a head from the green paper, and glue these to the bottom of the rock.

Draw on a face to the head.

Decorate the shell with paint, pens and any other materials you like.

9.Origami Turtle

This fun turtle craft not only looks adorable, but is a great way for kids to start developing a new skill! This step-by-step tutorial shows you how to create the cutest little turtles from just paper:

Check out more origami ideas, as well as great crafts for kids on our blog.

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Written by Sarah Hallam

Diploma of Education, Fine Arts, Bachelor of Arts specializing in Illustration and Visual media

Sarah Hallam picture

Sarah HallamDiploma of Education, Fine Arts, Bachelor of Arts specializing in Illustration and Visual media

With a Diploma in Education specializing in Fine Arts (Painting) and a Bachelor of Arts specializing in Illustration and Visual media from the University of Arts London, Sarah previously was a London-based teacher who brought her passion for art and culture to the classroom. Her creative endeavors include painting classes and experimenting with new recipes. She draws inspiration from the world around her and enjoys sharing her knowledge with others while sipping a cup of tea.

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