The aim of the workshop Making paper from elephant manure offers a unique chance to show the value of waste to the visitors of ARTIS as well as to show the principles of the circular economy and ARTIS’ sustainability ambitions. The purpose of the workshop is to illustrate the idea that something valuable can be created out of waste. If we can make something useful from manure, our 'Ultimate Waste', then why can’t we do the same with other everyday waste? The workshop highlights that we can turn waste to value in Artis and show people that there are easy and fun ways to reuse waste and make a useful product out of it.

There are two main components to the workshop: the information stand and the papermaking section. The information stand serves as a point of information about papermaking, elephant dung and its various uses. The papermaking stand is where visitors can turn elephant dung to paper in a hands-on activity. The workshop is targeted towards children of 6 years and older, the setup of the workshop also reflects this. Younger children can also take part with the help of adult supervision.

Setup and Appearance

As mentioned, the workshop has two key components: the papermaking station and the information stand. This section details information on the setup and intended appearance of each of the components of the workshop.


The workshop is accompanied by an information stand that contains background information. The content of the information stand can be found in our report. The stand contains information about cellulose and its uses,  the sustainability of making paper, and a DIY guide to making paper at home.


The papermaking station is designed very much like an assembly line with all the necessary items placed in order of their use in the process. It is important to note that since this activity is designed for children, the table on which the station is setup must not be too high to ensure children can reach the necessary tools to make their paper easily.

This station has 4 key steps that follow in sequence:

  1. Pulp in sieve

  2. Scooping the paper

  3. Couching the paper

  4. Drying the paper (to be done by a volunteer)