As children grow and their fine motor skills develop, parents should use increasingly difficult exercises to keep up with their child’s level of learning. This particular activity is not for babies and young toddlers because of the beads being so small, it can be frustrating for them as well as a choking hazard. You can, however, easily modify this activity and use larger “beads” like paper towel rolls cut into rings, or colored pasta if they find the large rings too easy (rigatoni would be good).

This is an activity that is free to make (depending on the materials you use). Plus, you get to go on a walk around your neighbourhood to find small branches for the project.

What you need

  • One or two small branches
  • Plasticine, clay, a cup, or anything you can find to stick the branch in to keep it upright
  • Beads

Let’s get started!

  • Find a nice cozy space (perhaps in front of a window) and a work surface
  • Place your branches on your work surface and a cup with beads.
    CEFA tip: if the area is carpeted, it will be a lot easier to pick up the beads that fall 🙂
  • You can work on a branch alongside your child, or just let them enjoy the activity on their own.

Learning opportunities

Children will practice fine motor and hand-eye coordination, both essential for writing. It is also a way for children to develop their artistic talent and express themselves in their own unique way.