How to make mountains for a school project

Written by amy davidson | 13/05/2017
How to make mountains for a school project
Snow-capped mountains can be replicated at home for school projects. (rocky mountains image by Earl Robbins from

School projects can be effective ways to encourage children to think creatively. Many nature-based projects, such as creating mountains, require ingenuity for a realistic look. However, making mountains for a school project can be a fun and easy task.

Walk around outside and collect stones and rocks of various sizes. Try to stick to ones that are brown or grey.

Mold modelling clay into the shape of a large mountain. You want it to look like a steep hill with a pointed mountain top. Depending on the size of your project, you probably will want to use about a quart of clay.

Push and pull certain areas of your mountain with your fingers. You don't want a completely smooth surface because mountain terrain is bumpy and uneven.

Take some of the bigger rocks and push them into the base of your mountain, adding smaller rocks as you go up it. You don't have to cover the entire mountain, just enough to give it a natural rocky appeal. Do not put any rocks at the mountain top. You will use this area for snow.

Cut a dark green pipe cleaner into pieces that are one or two centimetres long. Apply a dot of glue to the pipe cleaner and glue it to the top of a toothpick, pointing down and away from the toothpick. Glue three or four more pieces going down the toothpick, until you've covered a little over half the toothpick. This will become a tree. Create 15 to 20 trees this way. The more trees you have, the more realistic and detailed your mountain will look.

Brush the top of your mountain with a thin layer of craft glue and pour on white glitter or craft powder. This will be a beautiful way to create the look of snow atop your mountain.

Push the toothpick trees into the mountain at various spots. Cover any areas that seem bare or need a little pop and colour.

Allow the clay and glue to dry for at least a couple hours, then lightly spray shellac sealant to preserve the model mountain. Allow it to dry for about half an hour.

Things you need

  • Stones and rocks (various sizes)
  • Brown or grey modelling clay
  • Dark green pipe cleaner
  • 15 to 20 toothpicks
  • Craft glue
  • Paintbrush
  • White glitter or craft powder
  • Shellac sealant spray

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