I made this homemade button snake because it is a great way for young children to build fine motor skills, color recognition, and shape recognition. It is the perfect thing to keep little hands busy. If you have extra ribbon or felt on hand, this can be made in under 10 minutes.
You don’t need a sewing machine to make this great activity. All you need to make your own is scrap felt pieces, a long piece of ribbon, a button, and a needle and thread.
Cut a small slit in the middle of the felt squares that matches the size of the button. Thread your ribbon through one square and sew it directly onto the end of the ribbon. This piece will never come off and it keeps all of the other squares on too. Sew a large button (the size of a quarter) onto the top of the ribbon.
This is what it looks like when your child is finished putting all of the pieces on the end of the snake. B needed help putting the pieces on for a long time and still needs help getting them off sometimes. This is a so simple to make and has provided so many hours of fun and fine motor practice.
Put all of the pieces into a ziplock bag. Keep it in your purse or diaper bag. It is easy to bring along and use on car rides or while we wait somewhere like the dr. office.
Practice Different Skills
Cut various shapes to make a shape recognition activity or different colors to turn it into color recognition practice. This is also a fun way to practice counting as little fingers thread each pieces onto the button snake or button worm. For older children, use the button snake to practice patterning. Your child can have lots of practice with this skill in different ways.
Seasonal Button Snakes
Another great idea is to cut different shapes to go with a holiday, season, or theme like the leaf snake from Along the Way for Fall. Thread on a felt heart for Valentine’s Day. Make a flower button snake for Spring. Thread turkeys or Christmas trees to make a Thanksgiving button snake or a Christmas button snake. The possibilities are endless.
Still have more felt scraps to use up? Make a DIY Felt Pizza for pretend play that kids will love. Use more of your felt scraps to add this to your child’s play kitchen.