SparKits On Demand

Color Sticks

Companion Page

This activity requires the use of scissors, please use caution when cutting.

Age Group

Toddlers - 1-3 years

Toddlers (2-3 years)

Skill Builders


Math Concepts



Skill Builder - Expression of Emotions

Expression of Emotions

Skill Builder - Small Muscle Development

Small Motor Skills

What You'll Need

Cardboard box- i.e shoe box or bigger
4 different colored sheets of paper
4 popsicle/craft sticks

Optional: markers/paint

Let's Begin

  1. Tape or fold the bottom of your box. If your box is deep, you will want to be sure you have access to the inside in case any sticks go all the way through.
  2. Cut your colored paper into equal parts to cover the top of your box. Then glue/tape your pieces of paper onto the top of your box.
  3. On top of each colored section, you will cut 5 slits. These can be randomly placed. You will want to cut your slits about the width of your craft sticks.
  4. Make sure your craft sticks match the colors of your paper. Tip: If you don’t have colored sticks use paint or color them with marker to match the paper.
  5. Begin to play. You can start by showing your child the red stick and how it matches the red paper. Then, stick the craft stick in one of the slits. Let her have a try.

Get their brains going, talk to your child, for example…
Talk about what your child observes or ask questions like, “What color is your favorite color?” or “How many sticks can you match?”

CDC Milestones

Curious about your child’s development? All children develop at their own pace, but the Center for Disease Control’s developmental milestones can be a helpful guideline. Here are a few examples:

  • Shows fear in some situations
  • Puts things in a container, takes things out of a container
  • Looks at the right picture or thing when it’s named
  • Explores alone but with parent close by
  • Can follow 1-step verbal commands without any gestures
  • Drinks from a cup
  • Shows more and more independence
  • Knows names of familiar people and body parts
  • Might use one hand more than the other

Additional family resources

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Early Learning with ECA

Learning begins at birth. ECA provides foundations for learning, starting with age-appropriate experiences for infants, toddlers, and preschool. ECA also offers a range of family support programs that encourage family involvement with children’s learning.

Free tips and learning games

This free texting service provides quality, developmental information for parents and caregivers of children prenatal to age eight right to your phone. Messages include research-based, age-appropriate content from national experts, along with local updates of events and resources.

Free resources at your library

Your local library has many resources for you as a parent as well as for your child. We encourage you to take advantage of all they have to offer. For an online list of libraries by city, go to

Find help in your community

Dial 2-1-1 or 1-877-502-0700 for free, confidential, 24-hour information and referral assistance. Trained 2-1-1 Specialists can connect you to local organizations that can assist you with food, housing, health care, transportation, education and more.

Use of the materials described above are done so at your own risk and any children interacting with these materials should do so only under close adult supervision.

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