Hi there, I'm Tessa from Tales from Outside the Classroom and I'm glad to be here again sharing how I use Ellison dies in my classroom. I always give my students a couple gifts at the end of the year to help end the year on a high note and to give them something to remember me by. This year, I wanted to give them something with a bit of motivation, and these bookmarks are perfect for that!
First, I cut out super simple bookmarks using the Bookmark Die. I used cardstock because I knew I was going to write on them with Sharpies and I didn't want them to bleed through. I cut regular 9" x 12" cardstock into 4 pieces that I could use in the machine. I cut the landscape view into half so that I had two pieces that were 9" x 6", and then I cut those pieces again to create 9" x 3" pieces.
I wrote each student's name with regular Sharpie markers on the front side. Then, on the back, I wrote a note to that specific student. These notes were encouraging and motivating and were individualized for that student. It was a way for me to leave a little bit of myself for them to read and remember how much they mean to me, and how I know they will do so much after they move on from third grade!
Once a group of bookmarks were ready with names on the front and notes on the back, I laminated them for durability. This is entirely optional, but I wanted the bookmarks to last for a while. I used 3mil lamination pouches and they held up well with the cardstock. I would not recommend using a thinner film with cardstock as it won't hold as well after you cut it out; especially after you cut the flap.
To cut out the top flap, you can use an X-Acto knife or a pair of scissors. If you don't have an X-Acto knife either, I used a push pin to break through the laminate and make room for my scissors. You may be able to just use the push pin to cut the flap out all around, or you can use scissors to score it out.
I used scissors and the flap did cut out well. However, the film pulled up a little bit around the flap. I like to use a hair dryer to apply a bit more heat if this happens and just flatten it back down. It doesn't create a perfect seal, but does help keep the film from peeling further.
After I finished with all of the bookmarks, I matched them with books I picked out specifically for each student. I cannot wait to deliver them in a few days! I hope each bookmark gives each student a little smile and something they can look at this summer and remember I proud I am!