Make an Eight Page Mini-Book from One Sheet of Paper

In a previous article about making an address book for students, I indicated that you can make an eight page booklet from one sheet of paper with special folding. This method produces an eight segment booklet with segments that measure a height of 3.62 inches and a width of 2.4 inches. This method is a lot of work initially but once a master format is produced you can fairly easily make hundreds of booklets. It is possible to make full color booklets, but this still would be costly. If you print these in black and white and have pictures that the students can color this would be much better.

Make the template pictured for the booklet, but all you need is the eight segments and the fold lines. Be careful to also show the line to cut. After making one hot dog fold you will have the ability to cut the center section line if you unfold the hotdog fold and then make a “hamburger” fold and then cut only the center line where indicated. This gives you access to the center so you don’t end up cutting to the edge of the paper.

After this cut, then unfold the hamburger fold and refold in a hotdog fold and without opening that fold now make two hamburger folds which will cause four folds that are like hamburger folds. Now open all the folds back to the first hot dog fold, now you must push inward from each end of the hot dog fold to cause the innermost hamburger fold to push outward. As you do this you get the paper into a position that you can fold it into the final booklet form.

Once you get this right you should have no trouble doing it over and over again, The first time is the toughest. If you somehow get the folds wrong the only thing bad that will happen is that the pages may be in a different order than you expected. These booklets fold better with regular paper, not with card stock. You can use a ruler of something similar to help you crease the paper better as you fold. If you don’t make a good solid fold the paper will spring back open. Once you have made all the folds, you can use some tape or glue to help keep the pages together better.

This is difficult to explain in words, but easier to understand from the graphics. The great part about this once a master template is fully complete you can make more on any photocopier. This is a kind of origami (folding paper) which is great. This could be difficult to teach an entire class, but I found that if you train about 6 students when you can without distraction, you can make them helpers when you try this with a class.

I read that this type of booklet was used in a Japanese museum to make small guide books for visitors. Doing the guide books this way save money because they only used one sheet of paper for each booklet and made them “in house” rather that having them printed at a professional printer.

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