I recently made a easy color matching activity for my toddler using recycled egg cartons and pop sickle sticks. You simply paint the bottom of a egg carton different colors, and paint 12 pop sickle sticks those same colors. Slit a hole in each of the egg cartons and you are ready to play!
My toddler had a blast sticking colored pop sickle sticks into the egg cartons and the quiet time play kept him occupied for a good 10-15 minutes! I really liked this egg carton activity as it helps him practice color matching, sorting, as well as motor skills to stick the pop sickle into the correct slit. However, I wanted to add another dimension of learning to this activity.
Initially I was just going to add fruit graphics to the pop sickle sticks so he could match the colors with the fruits. (I chose fruits because they are so colorful, and he LOVES fruits). However, to add another level of learning, I decided to add fruits of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23. To be honest, this activity is also great for me because it helps me memorize scripture as well. (And I’ve really been reminded lately of the importance of hiding God’s words in our hearts and our children’s hearts).
Additionally, I also made a Mandarin version since we are speaking Mandarin to our toddler at home. The Mandarin version is also included in the FREE PRINTABLE. A side fact I learned through creating this activity: The fruits of the Spirit in Mandarin Bible is NOT in the same order as the ones listed in English! *GASP* I was so surprised, but my guess is the Mandarin version of the fruits of the Spirit is listed in that order for a better flow when reading (perhaps?).
This recycled egg carton activity is extremely easy to make. Simply print out My FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT MATCHING TODDLER ACTIVITY FREE Printable (available in my free resource library) and follow along in the tutorial to make your own Fruits of the Spirit Color Matching Activity!
For this version I made one side of the pop sickle stick English and the other side Mandarin. You can choose to just print out both sides in English or Mandarin, or simply just have one side only.
- My FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT MATCHING TODDLER ACTIVITY FREE Printable (available in my free resource library) *
- Empty egg carton – I used a paper egg carton, but plastic/styrofoam will work as well.
- Cereal box, or cardstock.
- 12 pop sickle sticks
- glue stick/paper glue – my sticker paper didn’t adhere very well to the paper egg cartons, so I ended up applying another layer of glue so it would stay
- Paper scissors
- X-acto knife
- Mod Podge (I used gloss) and brush
- Glue Gun
*I printed the printable on sticky paper, which made things a lot faster! However, you can also print on regular paper, or on cardstock (in which case you won’t need the cereal box)
Print out printable and stick the circular fruits onto cereal box or card stock. I found it’s easier to stick the circular fruits on to the cereal box first, then cut it out. Cut out all the fruits and matching pieces for the egg carton.
Stick all the egg carton pieces on**. Depending on how sticky your sticker paper is, you may or may not need to use more glue. Apply a thick layer of mod podge over the egg carton pieces and allow to dry (~20 minutes).
**Note: Yikes! I made a few mistakes in the placement of the egg carton stickers. Please refer to the photo below for cutting the slits in the egg carton for the CORRECT order.
How to Make Fruits of the Spirit Sticks:
Apply hot glue to top 1″ of pop sickle stick and stick it onto the back of the fruit circles. The top of your pop sickle stick will be halfway on the circle. Optional (If you are making your fruit sticks double sided): Apply more hot glue to the other side of the pop sickle stick.
Apply hot glue around the perimeter of the back of the circle, and stick the other side of the fruit circle and you are done.
Cutting Egg Carton Slits:
With a X-acto knife, make slits through the middle each of the egg cartons.
Note: Follow the photo on right side for placement for the egg carton stickers to get the correct order of the fruits of the Spirit starting with the circle “FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT” and ending with “GALATIANS 5:22-23”
The thing I love about this egg carton craft is that you can store the fruit sticks inside the egg carton when you aren’t playing with it (yay storage!). That way the little pop sickle sticks don’t get everywhere and lost when you are done.
I hope your little one enjoys this recycled egg carton activity as much as mine did,. Hopefully you and your kids got to memorize scripture in a fun and engaging way as well! Happy crafting 🙂
Want more recycled toys and activities for kids? Check out the following: