Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Popsicle Stick Color Matching Activity

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Looking for a simple and engaging color game to keep toddlers and preschool kids busy? Try this simple popsicle stick color matching activity! It's great for fine motor skills too.

Toddlers love to play with containers. And they love to put things into containers. That's why we've done a few busy bag and busy box activities that focus on this type of toddler play. 

One activity (it's not on the blog, sorry) that we used to do a lot was a pom pom stuff in busy bag, where you had to push pom poms through holes in the lid of a container. My boys absolutely loved it!

Since I had some extra colored craft sticks kicking around, I though the boys would enjoy a popsicle stick version of the pom pom busy bag.

The result: this simple popsicle stick color matching activity

So if you happen to have toddlers or preschoolers who love to play with containers, then they're going to love this idea!

Popsicle stick color matching activity for kids

What You'll Need for this Popsicle Stick Color Matching Activity for Kids

Ready to recreate this activity at home? Here's what you'll need to make this simple color matching activity yourself:

  • A plastic container with a lid - A large yogurt container works great for this activity. Plus, you can store all the popsicle sticks inside when done. That means this activity is portable too.
  • Colored popsicle sticks - You can also use plain popsicle sticks and color them yourself with permanent markers. The main thing is that you have sticks in different colors. Otherwise, it wouldn't be a color matching activity...
  • Colored permanent markers - You'll need colors that match the colored popsicle craft sticks. In this case, I needed red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.
  • Scissors - To make slots in the container for the popsicle sticks to go through. 

To prep the container, I stabbed the lid of the container with scissors to make six slots. Then I used the permanent markers to color around the slots, picking colors that matched the color of the colored popsicle sticks that I had. You could also write down the color names or color words by each slot (optional).

If you want your container to be less visually overwhelming for this color matching game, you could cover it in paper first. Or you could use a plainer looking container. I simply used what I had and kept things simple.

A simple color matching activity for toddlers and preschoolers using colored craft sticks and a plastic container

Toddlers & Preschoolers Will Love this Simple Color Matching Idea!

The main idea with this activity is to work on color recognition. To play, you simply push the popsicle sticks through the matching colored slot on the container. So yes, that means this activity is great for fine motor skills development and hand-eye coordination. That's in addition to practicing colors, obviously.

My youngest K really liked this activity. I knew he would! He'd carefully line up the popsicle stick and push it through the slot. Just look at his focus here.

Small toddler putting an orange popsicle stick into a container

Young toddler putting craft sticks in a container as part of a fine motor color matching activity

Toddler pushing popsicle sticks through a slot

Sometimes he would get frustrated when he couldn't quite get the sticks in. But he did manage to match the correct color on occasion. It's important to note that young toddlers, like my K here, find the act of pushing the sticks through the slots engaging on its own so it's totally fine if they don't match the colors.

My oldest J and my niece F also tried out this busy bag (box? container?) activity. They focused on the color matching aspect and easily completed the activity without assistance.

So if you're looking for a super simple activity to keep your little ones busy, try this popsicle stick color matching activity. It's easy to make and great for working on fine motor skills!

Popsicle stick color matching activity for kids