help: reasons to get a cricut for work

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Posted 4/18/2013 by bostonscrapper in General Scrappin'


PeaNut 570,285
October 2012
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Loc: Boston

Posted: 4/18/2013 11:53:46 AM
Hello! I am a Creative Expressions Instructor for an agency at a Day Program for people with Developmental Disabilities. Everyone that comes to the program is over the age of 18.
As a Creative Expressions Instructor, I am one of the 3 that focuses on dance, music and art therapy. I am trying to create a presentation on why getting a cricut would be benefical for our program. Can you give me some specifics. I have some ideas, but wonder if you can help and give me some input.
I'll let you know what the verdict is!

*If you can dream it, you can do it*
-Walt Disney


PeaNut 570,629
October 2012
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Loc: Sweet Home Alabama

Posted: 4/18/2013 12:06:05 PM
Well, I don't have your sort of job, but I do have a child over 18 and with developmental disabilities. I can only say that when she does pages it gives her a boost of confidence- builds her self image. I see her using decision making skills. We use the Cricut a lot and layering the pieces of paper works her dexterity. (not sure if I spelled htat correctly She has a sense of accomplishment when she finishes a page. She doesn't have severe disabilities. But if someone does, then learning shapes colors letters numbers could be so much better using the Cricut. Just a few thoughts.

be Creative and be Blessed!

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PeaNut 69,081
February 2003
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Posted: 4/18/2013 12:15:37 PM
I think a Cameo would be much better at a job than a cricut. You can keep the expense down by not buying cartridges and can use an existing computer you have at the job.

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PeaNut 272,954
August 2006
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Posted: 4/18/2013 12:17:23 PM
If you get the Close to My Heart Cricut cartridges, there are some very versatile designs for cutting. It has boxes, bags, cards, and a wide variety of designs that your people could use to make lots of different art projects. Those carts are designed for crafting.

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PeaNut 482,154
September 2010
Posts: 220
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Loc: Oklahoma

Posted: 4/18/2013 12:32:05 PM
I think either would be a great idea! I had a college course last year called Exceptional Learners and in the class our professor who has worked with individuals with disabilities for years would use die cutting machines to create tons and tons of art work for her students to do. She actually even brought us butterflies cut out that we decorated for credit that was sent to the Holocaust Museum which I believe is in D.C. they are creating one decorated butterfly to represent every person who died in the Holocaust which is close to 6 million people I believe. Many classrooms around the state here are doing the same so the museum can reach the number. I thought it was such an amazing thing to be a part of and I definitely would love to see how they all get displayed. Sooooo this could be a story to tell for your presentation and possibly something for your students to participate in. Good Luck! I hope you are able to get the machine. I'm sure it will be great for your program!


PeaNut 576,951
January 2013
Posts: 461
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Loc: Aberdeen, UK

Posted: 4/18/2013 1:47:42 PM
I think it's a great idea ! A Cricut will allow them to choose the image without being frustrated with cutting. It's portable and you don't need a computer to use it. I also recommend you to add a xyron machine (like create-a-sticker) to avoid gluing issues.
You're gonna need few cartridges, But those can be bought on eBay for a very reasonable price. Keep in mind you will need one with font, one with basic shapes. For special projects, you can use the Cricut Craft room, wait for the free seasonal cartridge they put on line for a week or so, and cut your images in advance.

Bonjour Scrap


PeaNut 225,338
September 2005
Posts: 2,527
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Loc: Georgia

Posted: 4/18/2013 7:12:32 PM
I'm an art therapist with years of experience in working with people who have mental illness. I would likely have lots of ideas -- could you please post or pmail me a bit more info about the goals of the work you do with clients (vocational, social skills, independent living skills, ADLs, personal expression, communication, etc)? That would help me know more how to make suggestions. Also, please let me know if it gets approved, and ill send you a couple of basic cartridges I never use (no cost).


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PeaNut 225,620
October 2005
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Layouts: 0

Posted: 4/18/2013 8:20:47 PM
If you really want to be creative and have a machine that will allow you SO many more options - get a Silhouette Cameo.

You will be locked into the Cricut/Cartridge loop and cannot use any of your own fonts and designs.

The Silhouette Cameo is initially more expensive - but far cheaper once you figure in the cartridge prices.

I cannot recommend any Cricut products to anyone.


PeaNut 56,203
November 2002
Posts: 1,360
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Loc: Da Burgh

Posted: 4/18/2013 8:55:42 PM
One reason to go cricut vs. cameo is that it may be more user friendly for individuals who may have limited computer skills, plus it would be more portable if shared among several groups/rooms.

A cricut can use many available materials (think free/recycled) to provide learning/creative growth activities. Decorations, individual scrapbooks, ease of making cards/projects to share w/their loved ones. The points about dexterity, decision making, above are good ones, as well as planning, learning design process, quick gratification when a cut or project is completed....


PeaNut 203,642
May 2005
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Layouts: 0

Posted: 4/19/2013 9:35:10 AM
Some posters have used the cost of cartridges as a reason to go with a Cameo vs. Cricut, but I agree with those who pointed out that the Cricut would be more user friendly for clients who have developmental disabilities.

If you want to accumulate cartridges without incurring a great deal of cost, I would suggest putting the word out through local groups that you are in need of used cartridges that are no longer "loved" by their owners. Check with CM, CTMH, and MW consultants and see if they would be willing to put the word out through their client lists. See if you LSS would let you put up a poster/flyers with information on how to get used cartridges to your facility. I don't know what policies Ms and Js have about such "solicitations", but you could try there as well. See if there are any scrapbook groups on FB that might collect donations, and you might even have some luck with FB yard sale groups.

I might consider putting out a request on Craigslist as well. If anyone is selling used carts on Craigslist, let them know that they can donate any unsold ones for a tax write-off (assuming your organization is a 501(c)). Contact the Salvation Army/Goodwill/other local charitable thrift shops and see if they will hold any donated carts for your group to see if you can use them.

You could also ask for any other supplies that people want to purge. You might get some great tactile materials that could work well for your clients.

My brother (age 48) is developmentally disabled and has CP. He receives services at a center that sounds similar to yours. Of course, he thinks he is going to "work" when he goes because he gets paid a small stipend for shredding documents every week (he is obsessed with shredders LOL! He goes through about one a year at home, and Mom is half afraid to put down any papers in his presence because they will be headed for the shredder as soon as her back is turned!) I can tell you that he is so PROUD of the items he makes during craft time, and he looks forward to going to work every Wednesday and Friday. I am so grateful that there are people like you who care so much for these clients who are so often overlooked by society.

In my experience, the general public just isn't all that aware of the needs of these adults, but when they do find out, the response can be tremendous. If there is any way to get the word out without compromising confidentiality, I think you could get a great response to a request for scrap supplies and Cricut carts.


PeaNut 570,285
October 2012
Posts: 231
Layouts: 9
Loc: Boston

Posted: 4/19/2013 5:40:27 PM
thank you so so much...i'm going to read everything all over again...come up with a presentation and let you know.
the only thing about a sil is that i don't have a computer in my classroom, only in the computer lab and it wouldn't be possible to just leave it in there.
thank you.

*If you can dream it, you can do it*
-Walt Disney


PeaNut 160,681
August 2004
Posts: 288
Layouts: 3

Posted: 4/19/2013 6:52:10 PM
Big fan of the Cameo and I used to own a Cricut just collecting dust right now.

mama nay

PeaNut 191,474
February 2005
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Loc: in the sunshine

Posted: 4/19/2013 9:06:02 PM
I think a cameo is more cost effective in the availability of free shapes, fonts, dingbats, etc. You can import and trace just about anything. But the learning curve is greater.

If your plan is for your clients to use the machine themselves with little help from you than the cricut is a better choice. Especially since PC seems to be pretty reliably giving free access to a few different shapes or a cart every week through CCR (cricut craft room). Granted CCR still has a small learning curve, but nothing like that of the cameo. But then again CCR can't do even half of what the Cameo can.

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PeaNut 163,613
August 2004
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Loc: *Sunny Southern California*

Posted: 4/20/2013 8:37:45 AM
Get a cameo. It'll be less expensive overall and you'll be able to do so much more the with it

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PeaNut 31,800
March 2002
Posts: 23
Layouts: 0

Posted: 4/20/2013 1:29:46 PM
Mom of an 11 year old with Down syndrome chiming in her. I have a cricut and we often use it as a family. It's great for making signs, cards, boxes, gifts and so much more. I don't know of the abilities of your students, but they have a paper doll cart that can help with making independent clothing choices ( what do you wear when it's cold out etc) job charts, and schedules of daily activities. My daughter has always liked coloring in the shapes we cut out and even using the negative as a stencil. You can cut out letters or words so they can work on spelling or writing sentences. So many possibilities.
Good luck!


PeaNut 130,343
February 2004
Posts: 1,177
Layouts: 132
Loc: Chicago

Posted: 4/20/2013 3:23:58 PM
Cameo is the better machine, however, if you intend to have clients use it, then I would probably recommend the Cricut. Baby Bug would be more portable, but Expression will give you more options. You could probably purchase one gently used for pretty cheap, or perhaps donated! If you do get a Cricuit, you will need to keep in mind the cost of the cartridges, although again, you can usually find them pretty cheap or put the word out and have many donated. If you do get a cricuit, please let me know via PMail as I would be willing to donate a cartridge


Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 163,728
August 2004
Posts: 5,024
Layouts: 41
Loc: Connecticut

Posted: 4/20/2013 4:22:53 PM
Bostonscrapper I'm going to pm you. Let me know if you don't get it okay?

Jan *********************************************


PeaNut 345,847
November 2007
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Layouts: 0

Posted: 4/20/2013 9:36:06 PM
I think a Cricut would be easier to use for adults with special needs. I can imagine that you could tailor the carts that you used to match with people's interests. I have a family member with Down's syndrome who would love the sea creatures from down by the shore and I can imagine the people and monsters from paper doll dress up could get a lot of use. . I worked in a day program for adults with special needs a number of years ago but can imagine that cutting a variety of shapes could be fun for those with limited dexterity. We often made day trips to volunteer throughout the community at a local park and businesses..... I can see a side project of making lots of thank you cards for the people who extend themselves to help you out as well..


PeaNut 118,464
December 2003
Posts: 4,266
Layouts: 0
Loc: Idaho

Posted: 4/20/2013 9:52:52 PM
Make sure you get the bigger cricut machine. It will give you a lot more options for things to make and in sizes that are more friendly for people with fine motor difficulties.

The people could make cards; room and table decorations for holidays and birthdays; scrapbook pages; books/booklets; bookmarks; simple games like matching, bingo, and go fish; door hangers; pennants with their names or a favorite team's name, etc.

Don't forget to include the cost of replacement blades, cutting mats, and cricut tools along with a few cartridges. You might look at Nate's ABC's or another simple font that would be easy to read. Some of the fonts might be hard for someone with disabilities to read. I recently purchased Nate's to use with a special needs student.

Baby Pea Step

PeaNut 129,592
February 2004
Posts: 1
Layouts: 0
Loc: Malden, Massachusetts

Posted: 7/2/2013 12:16:02 PM
Hi BostonScrapper,

I have a Cricut Imagine I'd be willing to donate. It comes with the Blossom & Imagine More cartridges, extra black & color ink cartridges, Cricut Imagine A to Z CD, 1 sheet full adhesive-backed printable vinyle, and 1 mat. I also have some regular Cricut cartridges and a Bind It All.

Let me know if you are interested.

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