Often you will see a note in the instructions of these geography printables suggesting you trim kids’ craft colored paper to 8 1/2 X 11 to fit in your printer. But I don’t often use the cheaper craft colored paper. And it’s not because of the paper size.
Now you can, of course. Absolutely.
But I like a more polished look! And I’m picky. Which is sometimes a good thing, and sometimes not so good. But I digress.
My Paper Choice for Printable Crafts
The colored paper I like to use is sold at my local big-box craft supply store in the scrapbook aisle. Which must mean it’s Scrapbooking Paper. But it comes in a cellophane-wrapped package of 50, so I can still buy it in bulk similar to craft paper.
This is what I buy: Recollections Cardstock Paper 8.5 x 11 – 50 Sheets – Black.* And they offer lots of color options. I am including the link from Amazon, but I don’t recommend you buy from there! Keep reading…
First, here’s the difference.
The colors with kids’ craft paper tend to be dull. But not so with scrapbooking paper. Scrapbooking paper colors are vibrant and attractive.
Second difference. Kids’ craft paper has a weird texture. I guess you could describe it as rough. Not sandpaper rough. Just not smooth.
On the other hand, scrapbooking paper is silky smooth. Well, not really silky, but smooth. To the eye and to the touch.
Lastly, scrapbooking paper is just a bit thicker. Not too thick, but it has enough oomph to make projects better able to handle the enthusiasm of creative kids. AND the enthusiasm of creative kids taking their project home.
It needs to survive the journey.
Sometimes you just need that extra sturdiness. It’s 65 lb. of sturdiness. What those numbers really mean, I’m not exactly sure, but copy paper is 20 lb. and cardstock is 110 lb, so scrapbooking paper is kind of in the middle.
And those are the reasons why I like it better.
Geography Printables Paper at a Good Price
Which begs the question, “How does it compare in price?” To be honest with you, I’ve never really run the numbers. I imagine it may cost a bit more, but not by much, or economical-me wouldn’t be talking about this right now.
However I do have a system to get the best prices!
I told you I was economical!
I look over all the geography printables for the year’s crafts during the summer and count up my needs. Then I patiently wait for things to go on sale. And when they do, I am ready.
Typically I get several packs of black, several packs of navy blue, several of white, and then whatever other colors I am going to use that year. And all at the sale price.
Remember, I am buying for 2 classes of 12, so your needs may be different.
I use the navy for our printable passports, since I try to make these as authentic-looking as possible. I bring in my real (but expired) passport on the first day to show the kids, and they love knowing that theirs are also navy and look similar to the real thing.
White paper tends to be optional. By that I mean you can always use standard white cardstock. And I often do. Which, incidentally, I get at the local big-box warehouse store or wait for the sales at my office supply store.
However, the scrapbooking white paper is friendlier to my copier-printer than cardstock. At 65 lbs. versus 110 lbs., it’s a little less stiff and runs through the printer without any groans and squeals from a protesting machine.
So I will generally use the heavier white cardstock for backgrounds or when things don’t need to be printed on it.
Let’s Go Geography Printables
So there you have it. My paper preferences, where to get them, and why I choose what I do.
Of course, this is all based on the assumption that you will need the paper for the geography printables at Let’s Go Geography. These crafts really are the meat-and-potatoes of the creative part of every lesson. Yes, you can always do the coloring page instead.
But when the craft is easy, fun, and you get great results, there is no need to skip it.
If you aren’t familiar with Let’s Go Geography, you can learn more about the curriculum on this page!
After you subscribe, you can start printing and crafting your way around the world with Let’s Go Geography. I hope you’ll join us!
*The Amazon links are affiliate links, meaning I will earn a small commission with any purchase. I include these links so you can see pictures of the products and know exactly what I’m talking about!