Shape sorters are a fantastic toy for toddlers – they help in the development of fine motor skills, introduce early math concepts like shapes and spatial awareness, and can encourage problem solving and organizational skills. Best of all, they are fun!

Easy diy shape sorter

This super easy DIY shape sorter uses recycled materials and items you probably have in your home right now. It will only take about thirty minutes to make and you will have a homemade toy that is fun and full of learning opportunities. YOU WILL NEED: 1. Cardboard box (even just the lid of a box will do) 2. Pencil 3. Scissors or craft knife 4. Wooden blocks in a variety of shapes and sizes 5. Markers in colors to match the wooden blocks 6. Paper and adhesive tape (optional, see below)

Make a shape sorter for toddlers

HOW TO MAKE A DIY SHAPE SORTER FOR TODDLERS: 1. Arrange the wooden blocks on the lid of the cardboard box. 2. Using the pencil, draw an outline around each of the wooden blocks. 3. Remove the blocks and then cut out the shapes. It would be easiest to use a craft knife for this step, but all I had on hand was a pair of scissors and it was still possible without too much difficulty. Be sure to test each of the holes to make sure they are large enough by pushing the corresponding block through each one.

DIY toys for toddlers

4. If you are using a plain cardboard box, then you could skip this step. The box I used was covered in pictures and was would have been quite distracting when trying to sort the blocks, so I covered it in white paper. Simply cover the whole box like wrapping a present, then cut out the areas where the holes are in the cardboard. Fold the paper back inside the box and tape it down on the inside. 5. Use the colored markers to outline the holes in the same color as the block that will be put through that shape. 6. Place the lid on the box and you are ready to play! 7. The box we used was a lidded one. It works well because the blocks are easy to retrieve – just remove the lid and there they are. It is also handy because the blocks are contained neatly within the box when the shape sorter is not in use. If you happen to have a box that is all-in-one with a flap closure, that will work just as well, although you might want to cut an opening in one side of the box to make it easy for your toddler to retrieve the blocks from inside. That’s it! So quick, so simple and lots of fun! Now I have plans to make a more challenging version such as using several different sizes of the same shape or using household items instead of blocks.

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  1. You are a genius. I bought a shape sorter before I started practicing Montessori at home but my son finds it overwhelming and doesn’t even try it. This is perfect and I’m sure he will enjoy the simplicity of it

  2. Yeah for visiting last week’s Friday Flash Blog on The Jenny Evolution. I’m setting this up to pin right now 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    Jennifer @ The Jenny Evolution

  3. What a nifty way to make a shape sorter for your children. This is a very creative idea 🙂 Thank you for sharing and for linking up this week to the Thoughtful Spot Weekly Blog Hop.

  4. What a great idea to use blocks that you already have to make a shape sorter. I’ll definitely be making one of these once my future baby is the appropriate age.

  5. Thanks for sharing this idea! I love that it uses shaped blocks -easy to put together! My son loves stuffing things into holes -this will be a fun activity for him. I’m sure he will enjoy the challenge.