Welcome to the ultimate collection of busy bag ideas! We just love busy bags at our house.
What is a busy bag?
A busy bag is a bag that contains a reusable activity that your child can use on their own with little supervision or instruction. Busy Bags are meant to be engaging and to help keep a young learner busy and occupied. Busy bags are ideal for use while Mom is occupied, cooking or teaching older students, while you wait at appointments, or while traveling in the car.
Need a busy bag? Look no further! This IS the ULTIMATE GUIDE OF BUSY BAGS.
Busy Bags For Baby
- A nice DIY textured photo book that features smily faces and intriguing textures.
- Sparkle, sparkle – catch your baby’s eye with Playtime Baby Bling.
- Let your child snuggle up with this easy to make Stuffed Taggie Bunny.
- Give you child a sensory bag of familiar faces to keep them focused in independent exploration.
- An ocean sensory busy bag is a fun toy for little hands. Squish and squoosh
Busy Bag Printables
- Learn about ocean animals while you count and clip!
- These match and count cards are precious!
- These are popular for a reason! A great counting, shape, and color printable from Powerful Mothering.
- Some very beautiful and original printables for counting, sorting, and more!
- Someone say Strawberry Shortcake? Try these little strawberry counting cards with lose parts as “seeds”.
- Hand-eye coordination, counting, color recognition… it’s all here in a Duplo block counting tower busy bag.
- Fill the body for the happy caterpillar using pom-poms
- Save some pom-poms for your new printable magnetic pom-pom sheets! Looks like fun!
ABC and letters:
- ABC and 123 at the same place – thank you 3Dinosaurs!
- Ka-pow! Learn the letters! Superhero letter match printables are cute and quirky.
- Print out some alphabet letter strips and pair them up with beads – great for homeschooling.
- Cut out laundry letters are so cute!
- ABC bingo is a great game for older children.
- Looking for more? A shoot-the-letter game will challenge and refine hand-eye coordination.
- A letter hunt can save a rainy day.
- I love memory games, this abc memory game looks so fun!
- ABC lacing cards help develop fine motor skills and letter recognition.
Colors and Shapes:
- Inspire the artist within with these abstract color printables.
- Cute art and bright colors are perfect in this matching colors busy bag.
- A felt shape game is a nice calming activity to help kids unwind.
- Match a Wacky Tracks Fidget toy to these 6 shape printables.
- Simple shape printable for little hands.
- A classic book turning classic fine motor activity – try these lacing brown bear cards.
Busy Bags with Color
Bright and beautiful, these creative color themed busy bags are great homemade play for kids!
- Save this color scavenger hunt for a rainy day activity.
- Paperclips are no longer a boring desk tool – use them in this fine motor color matching busy bag.
- Little felt pockets to fill with treasures in a felt color sorting busy bag.
- Great ideas for sorting with loose parts you likely have scattered throughout your house.
- Recycle egg cartons into an entertaining color sort game for kids!
- Button sorting cups are easy to put together for sorting fun.
- I love this color shades busy bag for teaching about the different shades of colors!
- Another color sorting idea with reused paint chips.
- Recycle bottle caps are part of Simple Fun for Kids color matching busy bag.
- Find inspiration here for 3 easy color activities for toddlers.
- I’ve always been a fan of fancy pencils, a pencil and eraser color match is just the excuse I need to start collecting again.
Busy Bags with Shapes
Great ideas for kids to practice fine motor skills while they learn how shapes feel, look, and fit together.
- This loose shape busy bag is great for exciting a preschoolers imagination.
- DIY magnetic tangram buys bag! Awesome!
- A simple sticker matching game looks fun.
- My daughter loves cutting, this cutting practice with shapes is great!
- A DIY shape sorter is an example of the wonderful DIY toys you can make with dollar store finds.
- Use an ice cube tray in this budget friendly shape sorter busy bag for toddlers
- Make your own sorting shapes busy bag with materials your have around the house.
- This shape town is a bit involved but has such a beautiful and rewarding result.
- I love this classic fish for shapes game.
Busy Bags with Letters / ABC
- DIY alphablock dominoes are so cute!
- This alphabet match has such beautiful letters, the best part is they are DIY.
- A recycled alphabet and number busy box is so clever and resourceful.
- Tracing letters busy bag for preschooler and early writer.
- Recycle lids into little bugs for abc bug play.
- Magnets always win kids attention – this magnetic spelling game will not fail.
- Grab foam letters and recycle some straws for an easy abc busy bag.
- Use these simple tools to develop fine motor skills and identify letter sounds
Busy Bags with Numbers
- Homemade number boards make learning numbers simple and delightful.
- Counting sprinkles should entice a sweet tooth to learn numbers.
- Fun counting practice for the dino lover.
- Mummy and baby dinos make numbers fun! Lessons Learnt gives a great break down of the objective of this game and how it helps children learn.
- Make this apple counting busy bag at home with material I know you have!
- Another great idea to use simple materials for a matching number busy bag.
- I love this acorn math busy bag, it is a great mix of nature with number.
Clothes Pin (Pegs) Busy Bags
- Clothespin letter match busy bag looks like long-term entertainment.
- Easy color coding clothespins to learn days of the week.
- From Simple Fun for Kids, color matching clothespins is truly simple fun for kids.
- A lovely clothespin game with washi tape, I want to get some!
- How can you resist these DIY dress up dolls?! I’m inspired 🙂
- Clothespin bunny busy bag is a GREAT little bag for fine motor and creative play.
- Clips and sticks for a fun counting busy bag.
- Gotta love easy and free – abc fine motor preschool busy bag with clothes pins
Popsicle Stick Busy Bags
- Velcro dot craft sticks are a must do – great for all ages and skill levels.
- The Chaos and the Clutter gives us 3 busy bags with popsicle sticks.
- A easy way to use craft sticks and buttons in this counting busy bag.
- And a similar idea with these counting sticks.
- This craft stick tally busy bag will help preschoolers practice math skills
- Excite the senses with a sensory stick color match.
- Simple color sorting activity – I love the trick with play dough!
- A DIY shape builder is such simple fun.
- Matching lower and uppercase letters with popsicle sticks.
Lego Busy Bags
- This lego patters busy box would entertain for hours!
- A lego travel box with a built-in lego foundation, great solution to avoid spilling during car travel.
- Build a pattern on the turkey’s tail!
- A surprise lego box can bring fun back into forgotten pieces.
- Share the love with these Valentine Day’s inspired letter and shape lego busy bag.
- Personalize the building experience for your kids with this DIY lego puzzle busy bag.
- Make uppercase lego letter shapes to match these printables.
- Build legos or duplo blocks in familiar shapes.
Car and Train Themed Busy Bags
- ABC vehicle busy bag with so many applications.
- The DIY car track busy bag is so cute, I just love everything about it.
- Another darling idea, a portable pretend model train set is a *perfect* toy.
- Practice shape recognition with cars in this race car shape busy bag.
- Quick and easy shape and truck busy bag for toddlers and preschoolers!
- The alphabet letter tracing book is great for kids who can’t get enough of cars.
- A precious DIY train game with colorful painted rocks.
- Simple train themed counting busy bag.
- Colorful graphics for a variety of vehicle themed matching games.
- Fun sensory stimulation with a light box and train tracks.
Quiet Books and Boxes
Quiet books are labors of love to share with your children. They are precious beyond words and enjoyed for years and years. Quiet boxes are a little easier and user friendly, no special skills required, just an imagination and some fun items.
- A quiet book 101 resource, full of inspiration and thoughtful tips to make the best book you can.
- Memory games for a quiet book, find more ideas in the rest of her series.
- No sewing skills? Fear not! This no-sew quiet book tutorial is for you, check out the pages in detail here.
- Ring binding is another option for easy binding, look at these cute pages!
- Here is yet another no-sew idea, this one is a little craft book with activities for quiet time.
- A lovely solution for younger kids – laminate your quiet book! An idea for a quiet book of shapes.
- A helpful break down on the technique behind making a successful busy box for quiet and independent activities.
- An Easter themed busy box in action – filled with fine motor activities, letter matching, and more.
- Love this idea, a fuzzy felt board is so adaptable for other fun themes.
- Aliens Love Underpants quiet time busy box and book in one activity.
Fine Motor Busy Bags
Fine motor skills are so fun to develop!
- Plant a happy little heart garden to grow in your home.
- More symbols of love for you with this threading hearts busy bag.
- Like threading? Try with a crazy straw!
- Lacing with easy homemade foam shapes.
- Practice fine motor skills with a tiny pom-pom busy bag.
- Monsters are coming to munch in a monster munch busy bag.
- Does not get any easier, cheaper, or simpler than this fine motor play busy bag idea.
- A pom-pom shoot, how cute!
- Scale it up or scale down, fine motor play for all ages.
Inspired by Nature
I love using animals, weather, and plants in our educational play. These ideas are so fun!
- Worms in apples – a fine motor button pull.
- Preschool button snakes are easy to make and lots of fun!
- Inspired by the ever popular Hungry Caterpillar, a counting caterpillar busy bag is sure to inspire smiles.
- Here is a happy spring time bunny and tail matching busy bag.
- A weaving rainbow is a great opportunity to sit in the warm sunshine and practice fine motor finger movements.
- Maybe while you are out, you’ll see a butterfly and enjoy a butterfly symmetry busy bag.
- Number practice with bedazzeled butterflies, also nice for pattern recognition.
- Collect fallen leaves for a beautiful nature inspired leaf matching game.
- Contrast your sunny activities with this snowy inspiration and build a snowflake.
Puzzles and Memory Games
I’ma huge fan of puzzle and memory games, they were my favorite as a child and now I love finding ways to share the joy with my daughter.
- Lid matching is a cute and easy game to make for shape and/or color recognition.
- Rainbow ideas are always so nice, this sort and count rainbow puzzle busy bag is no exception.
- A quick and easy photo memory game with familiar faces!
- Have some animal fun with a printable animal puzzle.
- Use this rainbow felt puzzle idea in a quiet book or out on its own.
- You can make your very own puzzle with any picture using this DIY popsicle stick puzzle tutorial.
- What colorful puzzles to make with paint chips, best yet, they are free!
Early learning works best when it is direct hands on experience, these busy bags deliver!
- Learn about all the animals and be a part of the animal trackers club.
- I have such fond memories of walking around the house looking through a prism, this rainbow prism busy bag is a must do.
- Magnets are awesome, better than watching tv!
- Watch young minds blossom with pretend play busy bags.
- A magnetic farm is very original.
- It looks just like Mom’s – pumpkin pie felt busy bag.
Feelin crafty? Check these out!
- Pine cones offer lots of fun in this pine cone pet busy bag.
- A simple, travel friendly felt dress up and decorate game.
- Create…and eat a marshmallow tower.
- Create a garden with play dough.
- Get creative with a build-a-monster busy bag.
- Great use of a multi-pocket bag – art inspired super easy toddler busy bag.
Sometimes when you are on-the-go, vacationing, or traveling you need a more heavy duty busy bag. Here are some busy bag packs just for you.
- 8 items, 50 ways – a mobile pocket playground.
- A DIY kids hotel activity pack is a creative way to use hotel space.
- Travel tips and travel toy advice from a mom who knows.
- I love this binder idea – perfect for airplanes.
- Many busy bags all tucked neatly into one book – the travel friendly busy bag book.
- This portable travel activity kit is kid approved!
- Travel busy boxes are nice for a weekend at Grandparents’ house.
- Peek into this road trip busy box to see what their “must haves” are.
- I like these fun kid activities during vacation time.
Ring-a-ding-ding ~ Happy Holidays and Festive Celebrating!
- Felt heart garden busy bag is an easy make for Valentine’s Day.
- Make hearts with pattern blocks – I love pattern blocks!
- Shamrock pattern matching for St Patty’s.
- Three fun busy bags to celebrate fall festivities.
- Spoooky math games for your fearless little one.
- Practice counting pumpkins in the fall.
- Make a felt turkey busy bag!
- Another great idea with magnets – a magnetic christmas tree busy bag.
- This will keep you busy – 24 Christmas themed busy bag ideas for toddlers.
- A snow inspired felt snowman busy bag.
- Winter themed craft stick puzzle busy bag.
- MMMM…. gingermen – build your own felt gingerman.
- And then practice matching shapes on your gingerman!
- So bright and shiny! Color sorting with gift bows.
- Fine motor skills for a pipe cleaner Christmas tree busy bag.
- Problem-solving felt puzzles for Christmas.
I also loved these ideas and inspirations from ALLterNATIVElearning for as Sustainable, Easy, Quick, and Inexpensive busy bags as well as how to make busy bags from thrift shop finds.