Playdough Activity: Egg Carton Play

Egg Cartons, can you ever have enough?  This is a house hold item I NEVER throw away.  There are endless play opportunities you can use them for.  I have a cupboard of recyclable items and I whip them out when I quickly want to put an activity together.  I am going to focus our play activities on fine motor skill development this month using these egg cartons.  The set ups are super easy and the activities can be done again and again.


What are fine motor skills?  We develop fine motor skills in children to help them control movements using small muscles in their hands and wrists.  We rely on these movements to perform key tasks in every day life.  These movements come so naturally to most adults that we usually don’t think about them.  These are complex, however.  They involve the coordinated efforts of the brain and muscles. Developing these skills aids children in holding a crayon or pencil, drawing pictures and writing, stacking blocks, stringing beads (Threading), using scissors, rulers and other tools.  Children also need fine motor skills to do daily tasks like get dressed, brush their teeth and feeding themselves. (Zip, button, etc).

This is so simple and so quick to prepare.  Let’s be honest, life is busy and we don’t often have time to think about this stuff.  So, for the busy moms who really want to play but don’t have the time, this one is for you.  It is also lovely because you can leave this out and they can revisit it throughout the month.

1.)  On the inside of the egg carton box, colour the bottoms. (I literally used a crayon and scribbled) For older children include more colours and they can use it as a colour recognition activity as well as developing those small muscles.  I then used a spoon and pompoms and she scooped the pompoms into the holes encouraging her to colour match.  For the younger babies, just let them use their hands to transfer pompoms from one container to the egg carton.  They will initially grab them in fists full and eventually as their little muscles develop, they will use the pincer grip (thumb and peter pointer).

2.)  On the outside of the carton – use round colour stickers or paint and make slits wide enough to fit a popsicle stick in.  Allow them to post the popsicle sticks into the slits. This develops hand eye coordination.  If you have colourful popsicle sticks, they can match the colours.  If not, they can just do it as a fine motor activity. Tip: You can also paint the popsicle sticks to make them colourful – the kids could help! Another activity 😊

3.)  I love to do Nursery Rhyme activities with my little 2-year-old because she loves singing along and is at that phase where nursery rhymes are everything.  So, I did a posting activity of 5 little monkeys jumping on the bed.  Same concept as the above but just that much more fun if they enjoy rhymes and can sing along.  Follow our @busy_bubs_play page for loads more nursery rhyme ideas.

4.)  I have not included an image but I also sometimes give her an egg carton and a container of rice/raw oats/rice crispies etc and let her scoop and pour the ingredients into each hole of the egg carton.  For older kids you can include different size spoons and scoops and a funnel.  Toddlers love these tactile and sensory experiences and never seem to get tired of them.  Babies love these kinds of activities too.  Just make sure they are sitting and that the ingredients are taste safe and soft as they are bound to put them in their mouths.  Again, they can use their hands to manipulate the ingredients and transfer them between containers.

The popsicle sticks I would suggest for the slightly older babies (around 10 months) as this requires more coordination and fine motor skills that they will potentially not have developed yet.

So, there it is.  Simple, easy and hours of fun while developing very essential skills in your littles.  Take 10min to make it and let them play for days while you enjoy hot coffee. 😊 Happy Playing moms and littles!

Be sure to follow us on Instagram @busy_bubs_play for more Busy Bubs Play Ideas.

I so look forward to sharing more with you soon!

 ❤ Jen and Tate

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