Candy Cane Ornament-Instructions

Ok.  Don’t laugh.  Hang with me for a second.  Children in Grades K-5 get a kick out of making preschool crafts.  AND these super simple crafts motivate kids to write!

I learned about these candy cane ornaments from this blog when I was teaching a Kindergarten class at a home school co-op.  The students made them for Christmas.

I decided to have my campers make them as well, then write out the instructions!

*This post contains affiliate links.  For more information, see my disclosures here.*

Here’s the lesson:

  1. First, make the beaded candy cane ornament in front of your students.

You need a red, white or green pipe cleaner* and red and white beads*.  I get both items in the craft aisle at Walmart.  If you only have a handful of students or you have extra zeal, you can get the beads with letters on them so students can bead their name into their candy cane.

Take one pipe cleaner.  Bend and ball up one end.

Fill the pipe cleaner with a pattern of red and white beads.  The pattern can be red, white, red, white OR three reds, three whites, what have you!

Leave an inch of pipe cleaner empty.  Bend and ball up the end.


Shape the pipe cleaner into a candy cane.

  1. Second, have your students make their own ornament.
  2. Third, have your students write the instructions on how to make the candy cane craft using the following guide.

To get a full understanding on how I conduct each writing lesson you may want to read the Writing Prompts Introduction post.  The lesson outlined below (and all other prompts posted) will make more sense and be easier to follow and use.  Here’s the lined paper I use for Grades K-2 and Grades 2-7

Explain to the students that they’re going to write detailed instructions on how to make the candy cane craft.

Show the five sections:

  1. Introduction (Engage the reader.)
  2. Materials
  3. Steps 1 and 2
  4. Steps 3 and 4
  5. Conclusion (Encourage the reader.)

Now to write!

Guide the students through the following steps.

  1. Write the title on the first line in the center.
  2. Engage the reader by asking a question about Christmas crafts or ornaments for the tree.
  3. Write the word MATERIALS on the next line, left side.
  4. List the materials (red, green or white pipe cleaner, red and white beads)
  5. Skip a line.
  6. On the next line, left side, write INSTRUCTIONS or STEPS
  7. Encourage young writers to write 4 steps. Have them use the words, First, Next, Then, Last.  Look at this sample.
  8. Encourage older writers to elaborate their instructions using details. They can also use the words, First, Next, Then, Last.  Check out this example.
  9. Write a conclusion that encourages the reader to make the candy cane craft.
  10. Once students are finished writing they can fill their border with a candy cane art accent.

Here’s the full lesson for you to print out and use.

Games that can be played following this lesson:

Silly Sentences (using Christmas vocabulary)

Words with # of Letters

Answer.Question?-Speaking Version