More Lorax Fun: DIY Characters for Pretend Play

Recently we re-themed our Sensory Bin for Two into the Dr. Seussical world of The Lorax.  

We added Lego Duplo creations such as the Once-ler’s house (which gets reconstructed often) and our DIY Truffula trees.  L&L have been using dollhouse people & Lego men to act out scenes.

They’ve been having tons of fun with it, but I felt they’d really enjoy adding some “real” characters from the book to their bin.    

So, on a recent trip to A.C. Moore, I picked up two packs of little wooden people from the wood craft section; one pack had two large “men” and the other pack had three smaller “boys.”  They were well under $2/pack.  I also grabbed a few colors of acrylic craft paint which were on sale for 44 cents each, and a few sheets of felt for 29 cents each.  

First we painted the wooden “people” using acrylic and tempera paints.  The little bottles of “My Studio” acrylic paints I bought this week on sale for 44 cents each, and the other paint we already owned.  


We decided to make the following characters from The Lorax: 

  • the Once-ler (green), 
  • the Lorax (orange), 
  • two Bar-ba-loots (brown), 
  • and one Swomee-Swan (orange body, yellow head).







Once they were painted, we sat them on a magazine to let them dry.  It didn’t take long at all.


I cut little additions to the characters out of felt and pipe cleaners, and glued them on using my hot glue gun.  I also cut out two Humming-Fish from sparkly orange felt we already had in the cabinet.

Voila!  Here are our Lorax characters:

The Once-ler, two Bar-ba-loots, the Lorax, and a Swomee-Swan.


The Once-ler, two Bar-ba-loots, the Lorax, a Swomee-Swan, and two Humming-Fish.
Their backsides 😉

These certainly aren’t works of art by any means, but the kids helped make them AND they are good enough representations for some fun imaginative play! 

I’d have to say the Lorax-themed sensory bin is by far L&L’s favorite yet, and I love that this one’s parts were made by us!  Oh, it isn’t beautiful to anyone other than L&L I’m sure, but the hours L&L have spent making the parts, setting up the bin, retelling the story over and over, and having FUN are certainly beautiful to me!  I think this goes far beyond where any beautiful store-bought toy could take them. 🙂

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Genny Upton

A former teacher turned stay at home mom to two preschool aged children. Creator (and writer) at In Lieu of Preschool and Parent Teach Play. Currently publishing my first children's picture book!

  • Carolyn says:

    Dr. Seuss’ ideas really make me enjoy doing kids’ crafts. I just so love his books and ideas!

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