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How to Make a Paper Fortune Teller

completed paper fortune teller or cootie catcher

Learn how to fold this classic paper fortune teller game and fill it with hidden messages for your friends. This fun origami is also sometimes called a cootie catcher.

If you enjoy this paper-folding project, try making an Origami X-Wing Fighter!


  • 8 ½-by-11-inch piece of construction paper cut into a square
  • Markers


If you don’t have a square piece of paper, here’s an easy way to cut an 8 1/2-by-11-inch piece of paper into a square.


STEP 1: Crease a square piece of paper diagonally from each corner. Fold the top right corner to touch the bottom left corner. Crease the fold with your finger and then unfold it so your sheet is flat again. Then take the top left corner and fold it over to the bottom right corner.

step 1 crease the paper to begin making your paper fortune teller

STEP 2: Fold the paper in half from each side. Bring the top edge of the paper to the bottom edge and crease the fold.

step 2

Unfold the paper so it’s flat again and rotate it by 90 degrees. Fold the new top edge of the paper to the bottom to crease it and then flatten it out again. Your paper will have four lines intersecting in the middle.

step 3 for paper fortune teller

STEP 3: Bring the corners to the center of the paper. Start with one of the bottom corners and fold it to the middle of the paper where the creases intersect.

how to fold a paper fortune teller

Press down on the fold with a fingernail so it stays in place.

folding a paper fortune teller

Turn your paper 90 degrees and fold the other bottom corner toward the center. Keep rotating and folding your paper until you’ve made a smaller square containing four triangles.

completing folds to make a paper fortune teller

Flip the paper over and fold each corner to the center again.

STEP 4: Put numbers in ascending order on the triangles. Start with the No. 1 in the smaller top left triangle on the fortune teller. Write the numbers in ascending order clockwise around the triangles until you get to eight.

Then pick four colors to write on the front side of the fortune teller.

add colors and numbers to paper fortune teller

STEP 5: Write the fortunes underneath the flaps. Open up the triangles labeled 1 and 2, and write a short fortune underneath each number. Write small so it fits in the space. Repeat the process under the flap for each number so you have eight different fortunes in all. Close the flaps once you’ve written all the fortunes.

Fortunes you can write:

  • “Something amazing is coming your way tomorrow.”
  • “You will live a very long and happy life.”
  • “Do a Good Turn today!”

label a paper fortune teller

STEP 6: Slide your fingers underneath the squares to operate the paper fortune teller. Ask a friend to choose a color and spell it out.

how to use a paper fortune teller

Then pick a number and count it out. As you do so, move your fingers with each letter and number called out.

how to use a paper fortune teller

Last, have them pick another number to reveal their fortune. Lift the flap for the number they picked. Read your friend’s fortune out loud.

revealed fortune in paper fortune teller

50 Comments on How to Make a Paper Fortune Teller

  1. Step 6 is impossible 😡😡😡

  2. It doesn’t work!!!😡

  3. how to use

  4. it works

  5. aedadnouy // May 10, 2024 at 2:02 am // Reply


  6. Its real my friend and pridict games

  7. so hard could not get it to work

  8. I type one out for my Demonstrative Essay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. it worked that’s cool

  10. Rocky star // March 23, 2024 at 5:04 am // Reply

    I love it soooooooooo!!! much i did it


  12. I’m telling all my friends about this!
    T h i s i s s o a m a z i n g ! ! !

  13. I LOVED IT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. I love it

    • These were around back in the early 60’s. We used to use them to find our future husbands and how many kids we were going to have. It didn’t work!

  15. Jakeeeeeeeeeeeeeed W. // February 20, 2024 at 11:22 am // Reply


  16. I messed up one but it was fine.

  17. Nice

  18. Did it! Yay

  19. How do you use it it doesn’t go on my brothers hand when he made it so I’d like to know

  20. Thank you. I remembered this thing from elementary school, but had no clue how to make one. I’m doing it now.

  21. your real name // December 9, 2023 at 6:21 pm // Reply

    I don’t understand at all

  22. takes a little to get it right

  23. I love it

  24. ■⊙♤♧◦•¤《》€£$¥◇ // October 25, 2023 at 1:56 pm // Reply

    Thank you for helping me!♡

  25. This is hard! But I figured it out. The first few steps were hard tho.

  26. hello

  27. how do you put it on???

  28. I really had fun

  29. Miya the pug // September 2, 2023 at 3:24 pm // Reply


  30. It’s hard.

  31. its so hard

  32. It went from a flare square to a working fortune teller

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