I hope you love showing your love for STEM and STEAM because I’ve got another fun Valentine’s Day project for you today! I know you will love this easy to make Light-Up Valentine Corner Bookmark. I’m hanging out with Maggy from Red Ted Art for her amazing 31 Days of Love series this month and I just had to make one of her brilliant corner bookmarks. I of course had to make it light-up, because that makes it more fun and adds a cool STEM lesson to your next paper crafting session. It’s a really fun way to introduce paper circuits and origami to your kids and students.
What is a Paper Circuit?
A paper circuit uses something called conductive tape to replace wires that are normally in an electric circuit. In this bookmark, I’m using copper tape, a coin cell battery, and an LED that’s built into a sticker. This makes it super easy to create the circuit.
One safety note for this project… Please keep coin cell batteries away from small children. They are extremely hazardous if swallowed.
Light Up Lightbulb Corner Bookmark Supplies Needed
This card requires a few specialty items, but once you add light to your paper crafting, you totally love it! You’ll notice I’m using some super cool LED stickers that make this project easier and sleek so the bookmark can slide right into a book.
Please note, I have provided links for supplies as they are hard to find in stores and as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This is at no cost to you.
- Card template (You can download it here by signing up for the Left Brain Craft Brain newsletter.)
- White cardstock
- White copy weight paper or red paper
- Copper tape
- CR-2032 coin cell battery
- Sticker LEDs
- Clear Tape
- Glue stick or double-sided tape
How to Make a Light-Up Valentine Corner Bookmark
- First download the printable template and cut out along the outside of the lightbulb parts and the red square. If you don’t have a printer on hand, you can always use red paper to make the bookmark.
- Next you’re going to make a traditional origami corner bookmark for the base. You can follow along with the pictures or grab the instructions HERE on Red Ted Art’s super easy tutorial.
How to Build the Lightbulb Circuit for the Valentine Corner Bookmark
Now it’s time to build your circuit. Grab the lightbulb that has the circuit lines on it, the copper tape, and the sticker LED.
- Place your sticker LED on top of the red heart with the small side facing the same direction as the point of the heart. Notice the + and – signs on the sticker, these are the postive and negative terminals of the LED.
- Tape along the circuit line between the LED sticker and the grey battery circle with copper tape. Make sure there are no breaks in the tape.
- Place battery on top of grey circle, negative terminal side down. Copper tape from the positive side of the LED sticker to the top of the battery, leaving a gap where there is a gap in the circuit line on the card. Secure battery to the lightbulb card with clear tape.
- Next, grab the double bulb part of the card and flip over. On the back of the side with the “You Light Up My Life” saying, place strips of copper tape as shown in the image below.
How to Assemble the Light Up Lightbulb Corner Bookmark
- Grab the double lightbulb piece and attach the circuit lightbulb to the inside of the bulb without the writing with a glue stick or double-sided tape.
- Fold over the top lightbulb over the bottom two light bulbs and place some glue or tape in the grey heart area of the paper. Do not glue over the copper tape as this can weaken the circuit.
- Glue or tape completed light bulb to bookmark as shown below. And then light it up by pressing on the “You light up my life!” saying!
Troubleshooting Paper Circuits
Paper circuits can be a bit finicky, but that’s the fun of engineering projects! You learn the most from trial and error. Here are a few things to try when the lights just won’t shine:
- Try flipping the battery over.
- Is the battery still good? Test it on a bulb you know is good.
- Is the bulb still good? Test it on a battery you know is good.
- Is the copper tape a continuous piece for each connection? If not, make sure that there’s enough overlap between each piece. 1” of overlap is typically sufficient.
- Do you have enough current? If you’re building a circuit with more than one bulb, you may need another battery.
- Is the battery securely attached to the circuit? Tape with clear tape if necessary.
More Paper Circuits! More Printable Valentines!
I literally can’t get enough of fun printables for Valentine’s Day. Especially ones that incorporate STEM & STEAM. So I whipped up another light-up corner bookmark that’s out of this world. And a bunch of other fun printables for your science and engineering loving kids. Hop over HERE to see the cool list and to grab this rocket bookmark template.
If you love paper crafting and want to add a new challenge to your cards, this ebook will introduce you to the world of paper circuits.
The Circuit Cards Paper Circuits for Kids Ebook contains 10+ printable and buildable paper circuits cards for holidays, special occasions, and year-round fun. Each card contains a printable template and circuit diagram, plus easy to follow instructions for paper circuits success.
Kids will love making a glowing unicorn horn, light-up cupcake cards for their friends’ birthdays, or Star Wars themed cards, too. After working through some of the basics of how to build a circuit with a handy circuit lesson plan, they’ll love crafting their own ideas, too.