Candy canes are pretty irresistible, so this has been the perfect counting busy bag. It was a cinch to make, and all of my kiddos absolutely love it.
I found solid colored candy canes at the grocery store then curled pipe cleaners/chenille stems around them and trimmed them. The edges were a bit sharp so I pushed them down as well as possible. So far no one has complained about them, so that’s always a good thing.
Now we have DIY candy cane stripes, which each child can put on and count. It’s both a math activity and great fine motor practice.
With younger children I like to focus on counting and helping them feel successful about that. Once they’re ready for more of a challenge you can throw in some number cards.
Here’s what the setup looked like with the older ones, Montessori inspired.
Playing with candy canes is a blast, but just know that some will probably break. It’s a great way to help encourage children to treat items gently and learn about things that are fragile. Of course you can always eat the broken candy canes or use them in a science experiment.
To see more fun-filled Christmas themed busy bags, pop on over to one of my favorite kid bloggers below.
FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
Gingerbread Man Shape Matching Busy Bag // Powerful Mothering
Christmas Counting Busy Bag // Coffee Cups and Crayons
Decorate a Play Dough Christmas Tree Play Kit // Mama. Papa. Bubba.
Gingerbread Button Counting Busy Bag // Wildflower Ramblings
Snowman Busy Bag // Frogs, Snails and Puppy Dog Tails
Reusable Christmas Sticker Busy Bag // Still Playing School
Christmas Posting Busy Bag // Adventures of Adam
Christmas Tree Busy Bag // The Pleasantest Thing
Christmas Jingle Bells Fine Motor Busy Bag // Sugar Aunts
Printable Mix and Match Christmas Puzzles // Itsy Bitsy Fun
Christmas Chocolate Maker Busy Bag // Best Toys 4 Toddlers
Printable Q-tip Snowflakes // Playdough to Plato
Candy Cane Stripe Counting // Preschool Inspirations
An Early Reader Christmas Busy Bag // The Educators’ Spin on It