Friday, 26 October 2012

Group C - Toddler Busy Bags!

This was our third swap, containing some of the biggest hits yet!

Pom-pom Pick-Up!

A great activity for concentration and fine motor-skill; using tweezers to pick up pom-poms, straws, pipe cleaners and other assorted small things, and then transfer them into the cup! This one came everywhere with us, for a long time. By Kate of Busy Bags!

Five little Ducks!

A super puppet-glove to accompany the song '5 little ducks'. The white Mother-duck is intended for the child to wear on their hand, but it works equally well the other way round! A lovely re-usable favourite! By Debra of Busy Bags!


This simple activity was a great success with everyone! Three different containers were provided with four envelopes containing different contents (Rice, Giant Cous-Cous, paper clips and small stones). The children had to tear a corner off an envelope and decant the contents into a tub, close the lid and shake shake shake!! A fine motor, and auditory extravaganza! By Jewels of Busy Bags!

Bugz Memory Game!

This matching game has been a hit for us; really simple but great for finding pairs, and teaching words such as 'pair, same, different, other, another" etc. I'm sure that with a bit of modeling from Mama and Papa, the game element, from turning them face-down will make these last even longer! Great for memory skills, visual discrimination, and cementing the concept of 'two, or pairs'. By Elly of Busy Bags!

Christmas Tree Creations!

A festive take on arranging shapes. After playing with ours a few times, we decided that it would be nice to stick it all down and make a picture; plus my 2.5 year old discovered that some of the shapes were stickers, and there was no stopping him! :) By Lauren of Busy Bags!

Rainbow Weaving!

This was a brightly coloured weaving activity. The coloured pieces were secure at one end and the white pieces were secure at 90 degrees to the coloured ones. They could be weaved together traditionally, or in any random way, as seen above! This was surprisingly addictive, though my little boy wanted to pull them off more than anything, so we added a stapler!! Great for fine motor skill and planning. By Karla of Busy Bags!

Lollypop Stick Jigsaws!

A simple but really effective jigsaw idea; line up the lolly-pop sticks in the right order to make the smiley face! By Sara of Busy Bags!
Sort your Animals!

Match animal silhouettes to either their colour, or their word. To help my toddler, I drew round one of the shapes on each card so that he could complete the task independently. Good for colour-matching; silhouette identification and early word identification. By LauraF of Busy Bags!

Beanbag Bonanza!

Three triangular bean bags, with a whole cacophony of games to play with them! Download and print these little cards with suggestions of numerous games to play! Supports the development of hand-eye coordination, gross motor skill, tactile development, planning, and all sorts of other things! By HelenS of busy Bags!

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Group B - Toddler Busy Bags!

We've finally been playing with our second lot of Busy Bags! Here are the photos of what we have played with so far! Are there are no limits to our creativity?

Make a Jigsaw Monster!

This create a creature activity was good even before the black foam was stuck to the card, as a stacking and arranging exercise. The black foam was arranged into an animal shape, then the backs were peeled off and the shapes stuck to the green card. Then the glitter glue, eyes and paper clips could be used in any way to add 'scales' and 'spots' to the monster! My son loved the peeling and sticking and glueing best! By Jewels of Busy Bags!

Button Octopus!

This is a button buttoning and unbuttoning exercise; 8 different sized and shaped buttons with 8 different coloured Octopus legs! Really good for fine motor skills and colour learning! By Sara of Busy Bags!

Web Weaving!

This is a great web weaving activity, developing spatial awareness, and planning as well as dexterity. Children being innately more creative than bigger children (adults) found many uses for this, from a retrievable frizbee, to a plate for the pizza game (Group A)! It also helped my son notice more spider webs when we were out on our next walk after doing this activity! By Elly of Busy Bags!

Sensory Balloons!

This is a great sensory activity visually, auditory, and kinesthetically... Balloons, filled with different substances and tied, coupled with an 'identifiction' card showing the possible contents! Plenty of rolling, squishing, squeezing, crinkly-listening and biting fun! We particularly loved them when we were stuck on the motorway, especially Mama, squishing the cous cous and lentil one against the steering wheel! Perfect stress reducers! By HelenS of Busy Bags!

Colour-Match Washing Line!

String the washing line between two chairs and then see if your little one can peg the mini clothes onto it. An added feature is that the clothes pegs could be matched to the clothes' colours! This was great for manual dexterity; holding the clothes and pegging the pegs at once was initially a challenge! One little boy insisted on leaving the washing line up for a few hours until his clothes were 'dry' :) By Debra of Busy Bags!

Stained 'glass' windows!

These were a big hit for us! This was created using a frame, covered in sticky-backed plastic to which the coloured see-through shapes and black borders were positioned! Once complete, the stained glass window could be put on a real window for the light to shine through! See through film was used to avoid shapes folding up when being stuck on. By EmmaT of Busy Bags!

Play dough!

Home made play dough in 5 colours with an instruction card giving ideas of 'things to make'. Here is the Play Dough Recipe! Great squidgy fun! By Karla of Busy Bags!

Double-Sided Dominoes!

Lovely laminated colour matching dominoes, simple but fun, especially as a group of paired busy bag when waiting for food to arrive at a restaurant. On the reverse are traditional number-spotted dominoes. This was great for colour-learning, number learning, turn taking and motor skills (picking them up from a flat table proved to be a good learning experience!). By Laura of Busy Bags!

Button Snake!

This was a simple button threading game, to create a long snake of shapes! This also has the added dimension of shape and colour recognition; 'can you get a red square next?' Great for dexterity and learning how to do buttons too! By Katy of Busy Bags!

Funny Faces!


This was a creative activity based around making faces. The card gave suggestions as to what to make, such as an 'angry face', an 'alien face'. The possibilities are endless! By Karla of Busy Bags!

Friday, 12 October 2012

Group A - Toddler Busy Bags!

These were our first Busy Bags! I think that getting used to making 10 identical bags meant that we learnt really quickly what kind of things are labour-intensive, and what worked well in dec-plicate!

Pipe Cleaners, straws and sticks copy-cats!

This one was all about threading, posting and poking for littlies, and about copying and re-creating the pictures on the cards for the more advanced toddle-pots in the group. Good for fine and gross motor skills and visual memory. By Jewels of Busy Bags!

Pasta Threading!

This was all about threading string through naturally dyed pasta tubes of different sizes. Hand sanitizer 'fixed' the colours without making the pasta soggy! (Natural Pasta Dye Recipe).  Good for fine motor skills and colour recognition. By Karla of Busy Bags!

Animal Matching Game!

This game is all about matching pictures of animals with pictures of animals! My 2y5m old could match the sounds too when I read them to him. Great for visual memory and auditory recall. By HelenS of Busy Bags!

Make a Pizza!

This was a massive hit with most of the toddlers! Younger ones just piled up their pizza and arranged the toppings, and more advanced ones could follow the 'order' cards and create a specific pizza. I thought that this was good for visual memory. By Debra of Busy Bags!

The Fishing Game!

Pick up the fish using the rod alone! Clever use of magnetic tape! This was great for fine and gross motor skills and also for colour recognition... 'Catch the red fish..' By Sally of Busy Bags!


This is a lower case and upper case matching game with the added motor skill element of pegging card! My toddler matched a few of the letters visually, even though we haven't done any alphabet stuff at all. He also figured out which end of the peg to squeeze and which opens. Peg the corresponding peg onto the letter on the card! By Stef of Busy Bags!

Colour-Matching Clips!

Match the clips to the coloured foam! For young toddlers, placing them on top of their matching colour was enough, but for older ones, clipping the paperclips onto the foam was added motor skill practice! By Elly of Busy Bags!

Coloured Peg Matching Game with Number Wheel!

Peg the pegs onto their matching colour! Colour matching and motor skills,
...and on the back...

...a handy little counting wheel and number symbol matching activity! By Sara of Busy Bags!

Make a Snake!

A great little game; simple for young toddlers who just put the pieces together, with an added element for those more advanced ones who must match the symbols at each junction! Gross and fine motor skills, colour and symbol matching, planning and spatial awareness. By Kate of Busy Bags!