We are big fans of busy bags in our house. Busy bags are basically self contained play that keep kids busy, brilliant to take with you to the doctors, restaurants etc. Here are three that are easy to make and use pipe cleaners...
1 - Pipe cleaner push. My sister made this one for her boys she got the idea from grow where they used pringle cans to push in pipe cleaners. My sister used a spice jar which already had holes in it large enough to poke the pipe cleaners through. Super easy and keeps little ones entertained for ages.
2 - Pipe cleaner threading. In this busy bag I put pipe cleaners, Cheerios and dried penne pasta. The original idea came from Chasing Cheerios, although they used string rather than pipe cleaners. The boys thread the pasta and loops onto the pipe cleaner and sometimes if they're in the mood make bracelets.
Here's one of the pipe cleaners threaded. I did dye the pasta with food colouring, but it's optional if you want to make this in minutes go without the colour you could always add some crayons and get the kids to decorate the pasta by colouring them. And 'yes' sometimes they do eat the cheerios!
3 - Pipe cleaner discovery bottle. The original idea for this came from Pre-School Play post about discovery bottles. The idea is to use a magnet to play with pipe cleaners. I found a cheap magnet pen and because of the metal in the pipe cleaners they stick to it really well.
The magnet also works great with paper clips. Add these into a bottle and you can move the magnet around the outside and see how the paper clips and pipe cleaners move.
This is what it all looks like in a bag. The boys can then choose to put the pipe cleaners and paper clips in the bottle or just play with them with the magnet.
I hope you've enjoyed these busy bag ideas. If you'd like to see more busy bag ideas check out these previous busy bag blog posts.