How to Make a Train Out of a Box

It’s time to get creative with cardboard boxes and make something meaningful that can bring hours of joy to your kid and the whole family! Building a train out of a box is an easy, inexpensive and fun project for kids to do at home. An imaginative way to save shipping material like cardboard boxes from ending up in landfills or recycling centers – turning them into highly playable items. 

How to Make a Train Out of a Box

Not only will you be reducing waste but they’ll also learn how simple materials can be used to create unique and playful things. If your kiddo loves trains, this project will keep them entertained while being educational too! In this blog post, we’ll walk you through how to make an awesome train out of a box in six simple steps. Read on if you’re ready to learn how to make a train out of a box.

Step-by-step Guidelines on How to Make a Train Out of a Box

Step 1: Gather the Materials

You will need a large cardboard box, scissors, markers or paint for decorating, tape and glue for assembling, and other craft materials like ribbon and pipe cleaners for embellishing. It’s also a good idea to have some adult supervision when cutting the cardboard box, as it may be difficult to do without help.

Step 2: Cut & Decorate the Box

Cut two large equal-sized rectangles out of the box and reserve one for later. The remaining pieces can be used to decorate the train. You can color, draw, or paint according to your desired design. It’s up to you whether you want your train to have a classic look by using black and white colors, or you can use more vibrant and lively colors

Step 3: Make the Wheels

Cut four circles from cardboard and glue them onto each corner of your decorated rectangle. If you have plastic bottle caps, these make perfect wheels too! It’s up to you how fancy you want them to look. You can paint or put on stickers to make them look even more realistic. But if you’re not feeling artistic, that’s okay too.

Step 4: Attach the Wheels

Glue each wheel onto the edges of the box in such a way that they are slightly raised from it. This will give your train a more realistic look when it’s finished. You can also attach small dowels or sticks to the wheels to make them look more like real train wheels. This is an optional step but highly recommended.

Step 5: Make the Smokestack

Empty Toilet Paper Roll

Cut a narrow rectangle out of cardboard and glue it on top of your train. Feel free to decorate this part with ribbons, feathers or any other craft materials you have. You can also make a smokestack from an empty toilet paper roll! This will simulate smoke rising from the engine. You can also add other details to your train like lights, windows and more.

Step 6: Add Finishing Touches

If desired, you can make a pair of eyes for your train by gluing two plastic bottle caps onto the front side of the box. You can also add pipe cleaners in various colors as fun details. Lastly, use tape or glue to attach the second large rectangle to the back of your train to create a tail end.

Use Enough Glue or Tape

Step 7: Create a Track

Once your train is complete, you can set up the track using empty paper towel rolls or wrapping paper tubes. You can connect them with tape and glue to create a variety of shapes and turns. Now your train is all setup and ready for lots of fun! Remember to stay safe and have fun!

Step 8: Take a Picture

Be sure to take lots of photos during the creative process and when your kid is playing with their new toy. Capture those precious moments so you can share them with family and friends. You can also use the photos for a themed photoshoot. This will give you a lasting memory of the fun project you created together!

Step 9: Clean Up

Once you are done, make sure all materials used in this project are safely stored away for future projects or simply recycled if needed. Now that you know how to make a train out of a box, go ahead and have some creative fun! Enjoy! That’s all there is to it. It’s a simple and fun project that requires minimal materials, making it perfect for the weekend. Your little engineer will love building this train at home!

Step 10: Ponder and Reflect

Take a few moments to reflect on the experiences your kid has gained from completing this project. Not only were you able to reduce waste and create something meaningful, but your kid also learned valuable skills like problem-solving, creativity and resourcefulness. After a successful day, it’s time to celebrate with your family!

Enjoy the quality time spent together and make sure to keep creating! Now that you know how to make a train out of a box, go ahead and give it a try. You’ll be creating something fun, enjoyable and eco-friendly in no time! Have fun!

Why This Project is Good for Kids?

This project is a great way to foster creativity and imagination, as well as teach kids problem-solving skills. It’s also a fun way to learn about recycling and upcycling, plus fine motor skills like cutting and gluing are developed when making the train. Plus, it gives your kid something meaningful that they can proudly show off! When they’re not playing with it, the train can be displayed in their room as a unique and special art project.

Motor Skills Like Cutting

This project is also great for developing a sense of responsibility and pride that comes when creating something with your own two hands. So, why not give it a try? Gather up some materials and have fun making a train out of a box! It will be an adventure that you and your kid won’t forget!

How Long It Takes to Make a Train Out of a Box?

Usually, it takes around an hour or two to make a train out of a box. Of course, this depends on the size and complexity of your project as well as the age of your kid. If your little one is familiar with crafting projects like this one, the train can be completed in no time. They’ll be able to show off their masterpiece.

Is It a Costly Project for Kids?

No, this project is not costly at all. Most of the items used can be found around the house or easily obtained from a craft store or dollar store. Even if you purchase new materials, it will still be an affordable project to do with your kid. Plus, you’ll have enough supplies to make several trains out of boxes! You can also save some money by recycling the box and reusing the supplies again.

Now that you know how to make a train out of a box, it’s time to get started! Gather up the materials needed, set aside an hour or two and have fun crafting with your little engineer. With minimal supplies, this project is perfect for a weekend activity and it’s something your kid will be proud of. So, gather up your supplies and start crafting away. Have fun with this project and enjoy the time spent together!

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: What Kind of Materials Do I Need to Make a Train Out of a Box? 

A: You will need cardboard, two plastic bottle caps, tape or glue, paint or stickers (optional) and any extra materials you would like to use for decoration.

A Piece of Cardboard

Q: How Long Does it Take? 

A: It usually takes about an hour to make a train out of a box depending on the complexity of the design.

Q: What Other Types of Projects Can I Do? 

A: You can use the same materials to create other fun projects like cars, airplanes and boats. Get creative!

Q: Is This a Good Project for Kids? 

A: Absolutely! Making a train out of a box is an engaging project that encourages kids to use their creativity and problem-solving skills. It is also a great way to teach them about recycling and eco-friendly practices.


After reading this article you know everything about how to make a train out of a box. Creating a train out of a box is not only fun for the kids, but for adults too! From turning a simple cardboard box into a colorful and creative masterpiece to rolling with it down the hallway, this project will bring hours of entertainment. You can get as creative or as basic as you want – either way, your creation will be your own. 

Whether it’s storing plastic animals inside the box, painting blocks of color all over it or just keeping things simple with some twine and string lights inside to give off a soft glow. In the end, whatever you create out of your cardboard box will turn into something truly special.

Give it all your best effort and energy and you’ll be amazed at what you come up with! So don’t let anything keep you from exploring your creativity and creating an awesome train out of an old box – because sometimes the simplest ideas are the most rewarding ones!

Photo of author

Jennifer Branett

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