Building with marshmallows and toothpicks is a classic activity.
I remember in middle school building with marshmallows and toothpicks to see what team could build the strongest bridge and then in high school, the biggest tower.
I even built and played with marshmallows and toothpicks as a grown adult for team building exercises in college and work.
Building with Marshmallows and toothpicks, and other variations too, is a great activity for any age… even toddlers and preschoolers!
My 4 year old was looking for something to do and I wanted to get a few things done on my computer.
My husband was complaining earlier in the day that nobody was eating the marshmallows and they were getting stale… and viola! An easy activity was born.
I gave my building loving boy toothpicks, marshmallows at the table and he went to town while I worked for my laptop.
He LOVED it.
It kept him so busy building and he was learning at the same time.
He actually did pretty good building and it kept him busy for well over 30 minutes.
I always did this activity when I was older, but you can really do this activity at any age.
(My two year old just ate the marshmallows though and made me nervous with the toothpicks so maybe not so young, but my four year old was so great with this activity!)
Marshmallow Building Activity for Kids: Supplies and Instructions
This Marshmallow Building Activity is quite simple.
Here is the supplies needed for this easy kid activity:
- Marshmallows (the regular size worked better for my 4 year old then the mini ones, but we’ve done both!)
Put the marshmallows and toothpicks out, and let the kids (or adults!) play and build.
You may want to put some paper towels down or tablecloth down first for easy clean up but this wasn’t that messy, so you don’t have to if you don’t want too.
You can also give some instruction or leave it totally up to them to lead the activity.
I personally just set left toothpicks and marshmallows out on the table and let my 4 year old go to town.
He needed some instruction and showed him how to make a box, and then after that, it was all him.
I occasionally held something here and there for him, but it was such a simple and self play activity. A great activity for toddlers– or any age!
However, if your audience is a little older or with groups you could:
- Create the tallest building without falling
- Create the sturdiest bridge without breaking
- Structure that can hold the most weight
- Create a variety of 3-D shapes
This is such a fun STEM activity for any age and you could create a challenge to it or just leave it open for creative play.
More Ways to Build
You also switch up the supplies if you don’t have marshmallows and toothpicks or switch it up to add a little variety to the activity.
Here are some ideas you could also do to expand on the basic activity:
- Gum Drops (instead of Marshmallows)
- Peeps (instead of Marshmallows)
- Jelly Beans (instead of Marshmallows)
- Play Dough (instead of Marshmallows)
- Clay (instead of Marshmallows)
- Spaghetti (instead of toothpicks)
- Pipe cleaners (instead of toothpicks)
- Popsicle sticks (instead of toothpicks)
- Pretzel sticks (instead of toothpicks)
- Straws (instead of toothpicks)
You can switch up any or all the supplies or try them all!
There’s so much this little activity can do!
I love introducing marshmallow and toothpick building to my four year old– and he had so much fun with this as a preschooler!
I also did spaghetti and playdough with my two year old, and that was a hit for a younger age!
However, I’m sure I’ll add some new supplies and new challenges as my kids get older! This is such a versatile activity for toddlers to adults!
What is your favorite way to do this simple activity?
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