I like the judicious use of of "interactive" or 3D graphic organizers; sometimes called Foldables®. The awesome Dinah Zike coined and registered the term Foldable® and created a juggernaut in education.
I think I have all of her Notebooking template books for science, and find them helpful for many topics.
Sometimes I use her work as as springboard for something I want, but she hasn't created yet. Sometimes I I just like the use of paper to create what I need in class. Such was the case for Earth Layers.
What I made is not truly a Foldable®, but it was Foldables® that gave me the idea for what I did.
My FoldableSlashPaperModel can be found here.
I don't care for activities that require a lot of cutting, gluing, and coloring without some instruction as well. I had to structure my direct teach portion of this lesson to go along with what the students were doing. A talk a little, work a little, talk a little, work a little lesson worked well.
It took about 2 class periods, but the kids got it. :)