You are in site section: Education

Geometric star

Fun at home activity

paper stars; yellow, purple, orange and dusty pink

Design and create your own Islamic geometric pattern, inspired by the exhibition ‘So That You Might Know Each Other’: Faith and Culture in Islam at the National Museum of Australia.

Islamic art is complex and is created for religious or non-religious purposes. It is found across the world from the Middle East, North Africa and Europe to Asia and Australia.

Islamic geometric patterns are a form of decoration made of basic shapes that are repeated again and again in simple or complex arrangements.

By changing a simple pattern, you can create an infinite number of designs. The patterns reflect unity, logic and order and are used to decorate everything from tables, clothes and carpets to buildings like mosques.

Look before you start: Use our step-by-step instructions and be sure to check out the short video below on our website first (adult helpers too!) Pause the video and replay steps if you need help.

Time: About 10 minutes for the first star

Skill level: ★★★ Challenging — you may need an adult helper

What you need:

  • paper – plain, patterned, coloured, newspaper or whatever you have on hand
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • compass or something round to trace, like a plate

How to make a six-pointed geometric star

Steps 1 to 2

  1. Gather your materials
  2. Start by drawing a circle. Trace around your circular object or draw a circle using a compass

Step 3

Cut out your circle with scissors and fold it exactly in half, creasing along the fold.

Step 4

Fold your semi-circle in half to make a wedge shape. Crease along the fold. Note the right-angled corner (A). Fold the right-angled corner (A) up to meet the curved edge, while keeping a sharp point at (B). Crease.

Step 5

On the curved edge, mark the point where the (A) meets the curved edge. You will use this mark as a guide for the next fold. Unfold, back to the original wedge shape.

Step 6

Keeping a sharp point at (A), your pencil mark as a guide and fold over one-third of the wedge shape so that the top curved edges meet. Your piece should look like this (below right).

Step 7

Flip your piece over. Repeat the last fold so your wedge is now folded into equal thirds. The folds should look like a zigzag from the top. Note the visible crease line (C) that you made in step 6.

Step 8

Cut along the creased line (C), cutting through all layers. Unfold to reveal your finished six-pointed star!

Share your creation

Email a photo or video to schoolholidays@nma.gov.au so we can see what you made.

See what others have made on our Flickr stream

Try other fun at home activities on our website