Barrel of Monkeys

To be honest, I never thought about buying a barrel of monkeys for B. Grandma introduced him to his first barrel and I thought it was a big mess for one little game. Fast forward 3 months and I’m so happy that we had those monkeys! B came up with so many different ways to use them.
Barrel of Monkeys
First, you can link them together in the intended way from random places – handles, hooks, knobs, etc. String them together and use them to practice counting.
Second, tie a string between two chairs and hang them on the string (pictured above). This is great for fine motor skill development.
barrel of monkeys
You can sort them by color. These are hanging from the basketball net.
barrel of monkeys
You can use them to make patterns.
barrel of monkeys

Our favorite game to play with the monkeys is to hang them from the bottom of the basketball hoop and shoot the ball to see how many we can knock off. Fun!
So many ways to play AND learn!

Also, here is a Barrel of Monkeys printable from Making Learning Fun that focuses on matching colors.

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  • Reply Michelle

    I love these ideas! I never thought of getting them either, but now I think they will make a great stocking stuffer this year with all the learning possibilities. I like hooking them to the basketball hoop and seeing how many you can knock off :0)

    September 27, 2010 at 12:44 pm
  • Reply gina {the little list}

    Thank you for this post. I keep eyeing them at the store but envisioned them scattered all over the house and never picked them up. I think I’ll go back.

    September 27, 2010 at 1:04 pm
  • Reply Lindsay

    oo so fun! We have a barrel of dinosaurs that my mom gave Sammy! I haven’t gotten that creative with them yet though! Love these ideas!

    September 27, 2010 at 1:46 pm
  • Reply Abbie

    These have made me nervous in the past too. I just know I am destined to lose them! But love your ideas enough that I might just have to look for them next time we are out.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:42 pm
  • Reply Infant Bibliophile

    You make me want to buy some! I’ve given them as gifts, but my son doesn’t have a set. Love when toys can become multifunctional like that.

    September 27, 2010 at 9:34 pm
  • Reply Mandy

    awesome!…we have some but i never thought of using them as a learning tool…thanks for the great ideas!

    September 27, 2010 at 9:38 pm
  • Reply Lori

    We still have our Barrell of Monkeys and even our Toy Story Barrell of Monkey’s. I can’t tell you have much fun we had with them, and you know what, I bet if I were to bring them out right now, one or all of my children would start playing.

    September 28, 2010 at 12:49 am
  • Reply EBeauty03

    LOVE the basket ball hoop game idea! Looks like I’m gonna have to buy more monkeys! Found your site via My Delicious Ambiguity and am SO GLAD! You have some WONDERFUL ideas!

    September 28, 2010 at 1:18 pm
  • Reply Jackie H.

    I have a set of those. I’ve never known what to do with them! A sort of strange guy that I dated before I met my husband gave them to me as a gift. (he was not more fun than a barrel of monkeys.) I kept them for some reason. I guess now I have a reason!!;)

    October 1, 2010 at 1:46 pm
  • Reply Sarah

    How funny! I love open-ended toys like that.

    October 4, 2010 at 7:54 am
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