How to Make a Model of an Island for a Project

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Study the island's shape carefully before forming its surface for your model.
Study the island's shape carefully before forming its surface for your model. (Image: John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Making a model of a simple imaginary island is a quite simple task, as all you need is to add a few terrain features on the surface. However, if you have to create a model of an existing island, things get more complicated. Not only do you have to form it's exact shape, but also add the right features in the right position. To succeed find the most accurate, detailed and largest map of the island available.

Things You'll Need

  • Map
  • Styrofoam
  • Pencil
  • Utility knife
  • Clay
  • Cotton
  • Green felt
  • Construction paper (yellow and gray)
  • Spoon
  • Duct tape
  • Plastic basin (large enough to hold the model)
  • Water

Draw the outline of the island on the Styrofoam using a pencil. Consult the map to evaluate if the final draft is accurate. Cut out the island's surface with the utility knife.

Form the island's mountains using brown clay. Check for pictures of the mountains online or consult the map's colors to make them proportional to the surface. Use cotton at their tops to depict snow.

Place green felt on the surface to depict the island's forests. Use strips of yellow construction paper for the beaches on the edges of the Styrofoam surface. Gray construction paper is suitable for rocky areas.

Use pieces of gray construction paper for urban centers of large islands, such as Ireland. On tiny islands with human settlements, create a few small buildings out of gray construction paper.

Bend a normal size spoon on the bowl and use duct tape to glue it in the middle of a basin's bottom. The basin must be shallow, so the spoon's grip reaches the surface when you fill 3/4 of the basin with water.

Place the island on the basin. Push it slightly on the spoon's grip to fix its position. If the island does not float easily, remove some clay from the mountains, as this is the heaviest material on the Styrofoam.

Tips & Warnings

  • A blue basin can give the impression of sea around the island.

References

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