How to Make Kiddie Chopsticks

kiddie chopsticks

Kiddie chopsticks are really easy to make. And did you know that when kids play with tongs and chopsticks, they are actually practicing fine motor skills that will help them with cutting and writing?

The ability to use tongs and kiddie chopsticks is a pre-scissor skill, and the ability to use scissors is a pre-writing skill.

Pretty cool, huh? Tong play is especially great for older toddlers and preschool-aged kids. Be sure to encourage them to use their “pincher fingers” (thumb and index finger, and younger ones can add in the middle finger) when operating their tongs so they can exercise the right muscles for learning to use scissors, crayons, and pencils. If they have difficulty figuring out which fingers to use, tell them to make an “L” shape with their thumb and index finger before placing them on the tongs…learned this trick from a parent, and it’s brilliant!

 You only need three things to make kiddie chopsticks:
• A set of cheap chopsticks
• The paper that comes with the chopsticks
•  A rubberband 

kiddie chopsticks

Step 1. Break apart the chopsticks.

kiddie chopsticks

Step 2. Roll up the paper all the way to the end.

kiddie chopsticks

kiddie chopsticks

Step 3. Place the rolled up paper in between the two broken ends.

kiddie chopsticks

Step 4. Place the rubberband over the chopsticks, on the side of the paper that’s closest to the middle.

kiddie chopsticks

Step 5. Pull the rubberband down, twist to form an “X”, and bring it up over the outer end of the chopsticks.

kiddie chopsticks

Step 6. Wrap remaining rubberband around the end until tight and secure.

kiddie chopsticks

Ta-da! Easy peasy.

kiddie chopsticks

A few tips: (1) The thicker you roll the paper, the wider your chopsticks will be (great for beginners). (2) Cheap, square-ish chopsticks are easier for kids to use than fancy round ones. Just grab a pair the next time you order take-out and you’ll be good to go.

If you feel like you need a little more visual guidance check out this great, easy-to-follow video: How to Make Kid-Friendly Chopsticks (this is actually how I learned to make them).

Kids can use these chopsticks to practice picking up and placing various items (such as balls of play dough) into containers. Have them pinch off the dough and roll the balls themselves for added fine motor practice.

kiddie chopsticks

Kids can also use tongs to increase challenge while stacking small blocks. (I’m thinking chopstick Jenga might be a fun challenge, too!)

kiddie chopsticks

Be sure to check back later this week for a big list of ideas with lots of different ways to play with tongs/chopsticks to promote your child’s fine motor and pre-writing development.

Have fun!

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9 thoughts on “How to Make Kiddie Chopsticks

  1. Yes! Tweezers, tongs, and chopsticks are great for building dexterity and fine-motor control! When I taught preschool we’d put out a variety of tongs and tweezers on a table with a pile of those soft little puff balls and ice cube trays or muffin tins. Kids as young as 2 or as old as 5 were always excited to use the tools to pick up the puff balls and put them in the spaces, making patterns and designs, noticing concepts like one-to-one correspondence and ABAB patterns. It was math, art, and fine motor all rolled into one!

  2. Jarrod, way to go! Be sure to check back later this week for a giant list of other fun ways to play with tongs, tweezers, and more.

      • Oops, I think I got the e-books from OT Mom. Sorry! However, I made the chopsticks with a client today and we had a great session!

      • Glad to hear! OT-mom-learning-activities.com is a fantastic resource for parents & therapists.

  3. Pingback: 50 Fun Ways to Play with Tongs - Mama OTMama OT

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  5. Pingback: How to Sneak Fine Motor Skills into Gross Motor Play -Mama OT

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