Monday, February 24, 2014

Marshmallow Snowflake Busy Bag Winter Activity for Fine-Motor Skills

The snow is finally melting and we're starting to think Spring here, but I have just one more snow-themed activity that I wanted to share with you. This activity was a hit with my Daycare kids and could easily be adapted for any age. These busy bags also make a great activity to toss in your purse and take with you when you're running errands or headed out to eat with older kids.
Marshmallow Snowflake Busy Bag Winter Activity for Fine-Motor Skills
One of the best parts of this activity is that it literally uses two materials that you probably already have in your kitchen:
Toothpicks
Marshmallows
Ribbon (optional)
Marshmallow Snowflake Busy Bag Winter Activity for Fine-Motor Skills
To make a busy bag, just toss a handful of each into a Ziplock bag and hand them to your child.  If you wanted to get fancy, you could take pictures of various sculptures and snowflakes that they could create, but this works just as well by letting their imagination run.

For my Daycare kids, I gave them each a handful of toothpicks and a handful of marshmallows to build with.  I showed them how to create snowflakes and we talked about how snowflakes have 6 sides, but that every snowflake is completely unique.

I had two main goals with this activity:

1) To build fine motor skills - it takes a lot of concentration to get those little marshmallows on the toothpicks and it builds tiny muscles as they're working.  These muscles will be important as just learn to write.

2) To let the kids be creative in their interpretation of what a snowflake might look like.

My 2-year-old decided he didn't want to build a snowflake at all and ended up creating a helicopter propeller.
Marshmallow Snowflake Busy Bag Winter Activity for Fine-Motor Skills
My toddler used his toothpick to carefully pick up his marshmallows and eat them.  He is currently 19 months and was under constant supervision the whole time.  He loved this activity and we often give him toothpicks to pick up finger foods.  As always, you know what is appropriate for your toddler and what they can handle.

Marshmallow Snowflake Busy Bag Winter Activity for Fine-Motor Skills 
These made adorable decorations for us to hang in the windows as we were watching the snow fall, but I'm glad that it's  melting now and I hope we the only snowflakes we see for the rest of winter are the marshmallow kind!

If you are looking for more marshmallow or snow-inspired crafts, you might enjoy:

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