The Wikki Stix crafts offered below are a great way to get children playing with math and literacy over the summer. Many kids struggle in the summer to retain important skills developed during the regular school year. By using playful activities and crafts, children can practice basic skills in a FUN way with Wikki Stix!
Materials needed: Red or Pink Wikki Stix for the watermelon flesh, Green Wikki Stix for the watermelon rind, Black Wikki Stix for the watermelon seeds/numbers, scissors, and paper plates or heavy paper for mounting.
Give the children a paper plate or a blank sheet of heavy paper to create on.
Have the children create a rind from the green Wikki Stix and add red or pink Wikki Stix inside the rind for the fleshy part of the watermelon. The children can cut black pieces of Wikki Stix with scissors for the seeds/numbers. Younger children may need assistance with cutting and making the numbers, but Wikki Stix can be easily cut with safety scissors.
For the activity: Pick any number the children are familiar with and have the children create that number from the black Wikki Stix to place on the created watermelon. The children must then make the corresponding number of seeds to place on their watermelon craft. The numbers can be exchanged for different or larger numbers as desired.
It is a great activity for one-to-one correspondence and helps develop fine motor skills, too! The watermelons can be saved or stored for use throughout the summer.
Materials needed: Red Wikki Stix for the crab’s body and legs/claws, Black/White Wikki Stix for the crab eyes, scissors, and assorted Wikki Stix to form letters.
To construct the crab: The children can cut strands of Wikki Stix to make eight legs for the crab. If desired, 2 heart shapes can be made from red Wikki Stix for the crab’s claws. The body can be made of a red Wikki Stix circle or spiral. The eyes are made from black and white pieces of Wikki Stix formed into balls.
Literacy Activities: there are a variety of literacy activities that can be done with the Wikki Stix crabs. As the children play with Wikki Stix, they will begin to develop their own creative ways to play with literacy! A few suggestions are offered below:
Matching Uppercase Letters to Lowercase Letters – have the children create any capital or lowercase letters that have been introduced with Wikki Stix. Place the letters (uppercase and lowercase) in random order around the crab. The children must then search for the matching uppercase and lowercase letters. For younger children, begin by making just a few Wikki Stix letters at a time until they are comfortable with matching.
Storytelling – place the created crabs on craft sticks and read “A House for Hermit Crab” by Eric Carle. The children can create houses or other items from the book with the Wikki Stix. Have the children use their created crafts to retell the story in their own words.
Word Building – The children can use Wikki Stix letters to make high frequency words, CVC words, or any words the kids are working on. The Wikki Stix will provide that extra layer of hands-on, sensory touch to help cement basic literacy skills!
Wikki Stix Apple Tree Counting Game
Materials needed: Assorted Wikki Stix, scissors, two dice, and mounting paper for the craft/activity. *Note – to reuse the activity, laminate the mounting paper prior to making the apple tree with Wikki Stix. Dry erase markers can also be used to write numbers/equations.
Ask the children to use Wikki Stix to create any kind of tree desired. This activity can also be used as a small group or partner activity. The children can then work together, or individually, to create the “apples” for the tree by forming balls or spirals from assorted WIkki Stix colors.
To play the game: The children must roll one die at a time to make a basic equation. The children can write (or make the numbers with Wikki Stix) on the mounting mat (see photo above). Ask the children to place the corresponding number of apples on the Wikki Stix trees after each roll of the die.
It’s a fun game to play and can be saved to use later. Older children can also practice basic subtraction, multiplication, or division using the Wikki Stix created apples.
Summer Squish Bags PDF
Summer Sensory Squishy Bags
Materials needed: Assorted Wikki Stix, colored commercial hair gel, gallon size plastic bags, and duct tape.
To make the sensory bags: Pour hair gel into the gallon-sized bags. The children can make any miniature items they desire to go into the bags with the Wikki Stix (brainstorm possible ideas with younger children: sun, sunglasses, letters, numbers, etc.). Place the miniature items inside the bags and distribute in the gel. Note – for extra security, duct tape the top of the bag to prevent the gel from leaking out.
Print the pdf file for Summer Squish Bags (linked above) and laminate for durability and reuse. Record the Wikki Stix items the children made in the blank space provided on the printable file. Ask the children to close their eyes and feel the squishy bags. See if the children can identify the Wikki Stix items inside the bag by TOUCH alone. The children can mark off any items they identify by placing an X inside the square provided on the recording sheet. Leave the bags out for the children to explore and play with!
With Wikki Stix, your children can have hours of FUN creating, playing, and learning throughout the summer!