DIY Preschool Manipulatives- Easy Recycled Interlocking Building Discs

Today's fine motor Friday's post is a simple tutorial to make DIY Preschool Manipulatives. If you come by here often you know we love DIY toys– especially toys made from recyclables! My new mantra is Save the Planet: Make a Toy!

How to Make Slotted Building Discs Preschool Manipulatives Using #6 Plastic Shrinky Dinks from Lalymom

When LalyDad and I order out we tend to pick our favorites over and over. What can I say, we know what we like! This has resulted in a collection of round #6 plastic lids. I don't know about your city but #6 plastic is actually the one common plastic that is NOT recyclable in Chicago. I don't know why, but I DO know that #6 plastic can be used in place of shrink dinks so we reuse it instead of recycle!

Shrinky Dinks Building Discs Preschool Manipulative Toys from Lalymom

If this is new to you, or you'd like to know more, check out my post on Tips, Tricks and Ideas About Shrinky Dinks.

When I first learned about using #6 plastic to make shrink dinks, I looked at the shape pressed into these round lids and knew I wanted to try this. Finally got around to it this morning.

How to use #6 Plastic to Make Shrinky Dinks Preschool Manipulatives - Tutorial from Lalymom

All you need to do is trim off the side edge of the lid, leaving you with a 5 inch plastic disc. Next cut the slots. I made mine pretty big thinking they would shrink a lot. I cut mine to about 3/8 inch wide. However once they shrunk the slots were a bit wide. Next time I would try cutting just a shade outside of the existing lines.

I followed my normal shrink dinks baking procedure at 350 and they were done in less than 10 minutes.

DIY Slotted Disc Preschool Manipulatives for Building from Lalymom

The resulting building discs ended up oval shaped, funny enough! They still interlock and can even be used with Interlox and probably Notch ‘Ems as well but because the slots are a bit wide, if you pick them up they don not stay connected. Bummer! But I can tell you one thing, I will be baking off any round take-out container lids that come our way!

DIY Preschool Manipulatives - Slotted Construction Toys with Interlox from Lalymom

Other Ways to Make Preschool Manipulatives

Even if you don't have any plastic takeout lids sitting around, you can still make slotted building sets. In fact a quick search on Pinterest turned up several awesome versions! Go directly to the tutorial for each one by clicking the title, or pin it for later!

Slotted Building Discs (with free printable) from Made By Joel (Pin it here).

Homemade Cardboard Construction Set from Happy Hooligans (Pin it here).

Circle Punch Slotting Discs from Mr. Printables (Pin it here).

Homemade Building Disc Set from What We Do All Day (Pin it here).

Fine Motor Fridays

Fine Motor Fridays Collaborative Weekly Series from Lalymom

We are back for another edition of Fine Motor Fridays! Click on through to see what the other FMF bloggers have been up to this week!

Clothespin Bunnies from Still Playing School

Easter Grass Contact Paper Collage from House of Burke

Fine Motor Fridays Pinterest Board

Looking for more DIY ideas for kids? If you enjoy trying simple, playful activities with your baby or toddler, I invite you to check out a lovely collaborative eBook that I contributed to. Zero to Two ~ the book of play is chock full of easy activities, step-by-step tutorials and inspiring photographs from some of the top kids bloggers from around the world! There is an index that helps you select the perfect activity based on your child's stage in life and many of the activities are perfect for multiple siblings of different ages to do together! Learn more here!

Zero to Two Book of Play Sidebar

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