Use Wikki Stix to help teach basic knots to young children

Do your kids like to bend, shape, and play with Wikki Stix?  Try some of the activities below for learning and fun!

WIKKI STIX for making KNOTS:  (see photo above for visuals)

Materials needed:  Wikki Stix©.

Give each child one Wikki Stix©.  Tell them to lay it flat on the table.
Step 1: Tell the children to bring each end of the Wikki Stix© down until the ends meet (blue in picture).  For very young children, have them practice JUST this step over and over until they can easily bring the two ends down and together.  For variation, have them do with different colors.

Step 2: Pick up one end of the Wikki Stix© and lay it across the other (green in picture).

Step 3:  Again, pick up one end of the Wikki Stix© and put in under the TOP of the loop (orange in the picture).

Step 4: Pull the end through a little to form the knot (purple in the picture).  Learning to tie knots is a developmental milestone for younger children.  They will be excited once they learn and want to do it over and over again.  Practice on the basic skills above until your children master the basic knot technique.


Materials needed:  Assorted Wikki Stix©, paper and markers to make signs, tables for the shops.

Set up “balloon” shops on tables for the kids.  Divide the children into as many groups or “shops” as necessary.  Let the kids make balloons on paper and tape to the tables for signs. Tell them that their balloon “shops” need to make balloons to giveaway or trade.  Use assorted colors of Wikki Stix© and let them be creative in making simple balloons.  Have the children count the balloons at each “shop” right after making.  Chart how many balloons are made at each “shop.” Which “shop” made MORE?  Which “shop” made LESS than the others? Did any two “shops” make the SAME amount of balloons? Let each of the children take several of the balloons they made at their own “shop” and travel around the room to the other “shops.”  The children can either giveaway (make it a kindness gesture) or trade their Wikki Stix© balloons. Let the children travel for awhile, and then return to their original “shop.”  Pool all of the balloons together again.  Do they have MORE than they began with or LESS?  Do any of the “shops” have the same amount now? Look at the balloons the children made.  Are some of the balloons the SAME or are they DIFFERENT?  This is a great way to incorporate early math concepts into everyday FUN!

Wikki Stix Number Wands

Materials needed: Playing Cards, Assorted Wikki Stix©.
Take one Wikki Stix© and bend the top part so it forms a loop.  You want to create a small circle or oval shape at the top.  This will become the child’s “Wikki Number Wand.”  Next, lay playing cards on the table or floor so they are face up.  The adult calls out a number for the student to find, and the student quickly and gently pushes their Wikki Stix© wand onto the correct number card to “catch” it.  If the child correctly identifies the numeral, the child can keep the playing card.  If the child chooses the wrong card, they can simply put it back in its original spot and try again.

For younger children you may want to set out a small number of cards for them to choose from (3-5 cards is best).

For older students who are comfortable with number recognition, you can begin to work on adding or subtracting numerals instead.  There are several ways you can play with this version:
Version 1: Call out 2 numerals for the student to “catch.”  The student then adds, subtracts, multiplies or divides the numerals (based on the child’s ability).

Version 2: Tell the child the sum of two numbers (i.e. 10).  The child then has to try and think of and find two numbers that add up to 10 (1 +9, 2 + 8, 3 + 7, etc).  You can also do this with subtraction, multiplication and division.

Wikki Stix are a FUN way to help children learn early concepts in a hands-on way!

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