Traditions make holidays fun and memorable for kids! To make a special New Year’s Eve tradition this year, create the Wikki Stix Countdown Activity Bags to engage kids in all the excitement of the coming New Year! The countdown bags are EASY to make with Wikki Stix and the free printable found below!
To make the countdown bags, first decide on a start time and end time for the children. Invite the children to help create the countdown bags prior to the start time. Younger kids may wish to make fewer bags to allow for regular bedtimes. Older kids may wish to create more countdown bags to allow for a longer time period.
Materials needed: Wikki Stix, paper lunch sacks (any color), scissors, and as many copies of the New Year’s printable as desired for the hourly countdown bags.
Set out the bags, Wikki Stix, scissors, and the New Year’s Eve Countdown Labels (Download the New Year’s Eve Countdown Bag Labels Here) on a table and invite the kids to create! On each label, the children can create a Wikki Stix clock with the clock hands placed on each hour of the countdown (see photo below).
To create the clocks: Each clock is created with 1 and ½ Wikki Stix (any color). Press the Wikki Stix together and then form into a circle for the clock. The numbers for the clock can be made with cut pieces of Wikki Stix and placed inside the circle. For very young children, have the older kids help in creating the Wikki Stix numbers for the clock or simply number the Wikki Stix clock with a permanent marker. Wikki Stix is a wonderful fine motor tool for kids to create with! Invite the children to place cut pieces of Wikki Stix for the clock “hands/arrows” on the start time on the first bag. For each additional hour of the countdown, have the children make a separate bag/clock with the corresponding times on the free printable label.
When the countdown bags are finished, place additional Wikki Stix and some of the suggested Wikki Stix activities below inside each of the bags. When the designated hour arrives, the children can open each bag to find fun activities to do while the festivities continue!
Suggested Wikki Stix Activities for the Countdown Bags:
Wikki Stix Crafted Dominoes – place any color of Wikki Stix in the bag and print a photo for the children to create DIY dominoes to play with on New Year’s Eve.
Frozen-Inspired Snowmen – can your kids create a snowman? Place white/black/orange Wikki Stix in the bag and a photo of the snowman. Each snowman will be unique and can be taken apart and built over and over again.
New Year’s Eve Scavenger Hunt and Name in Lights Printable – print the scavenger hunt and the name in lights to place inside the activity bag with additional Wikki Stix. It’s fun for the kids to “hunt the house” or design their own name in lights!
Ninja Turtle Crafts – add green Wikki Stix and any color for the turtle’s mask creations. Print a photo to challenge the kids to design their own Ninja Turtles for hours of pretend play!
Table Top Football, Football Lacing Printable, and Football Crafts for Kids – place brown and white Wikki Stix in the activity bags along with a photo of the football crafts. Kids can use the footballs for a table top football game or try the football lacing printable at the link above.
Free Counting Mats for Use with Wikki Stix – print the pages and add Wikki Stix to the bags. Invite the kids to make small balls with Wikki Stix to place on the printable pages for fun counting practice.
Apple Fine Motor Tracing Printable – place the printable and red Wikki Stix inside a countdown bag. Invite the kids to create various line paths to get the apple to the tree! This is a great pre-writing activity for younger children. Older children may wish to try the button apple craft!