Peg and Stick Color Match Activity for Toddlers

Children usually learn color names between age 2 to 4, and during this period, they are also refining their fine motor skills.  For toddlers, colorful peg (aka clothespins) and craft sticks (aka popsicle sticks) are attractive and helpful manipulatives that can help children attain new milestones.


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Incorporating sight word exposure with activities

For toddlers who are early readers, I like to mix in word recognition with activities for reading practice.  However, even if they are not reading, exposing them to print allows for words to be familiar over time.

Since my daughter is learning to read Chinese, I wrote Chinese color names on each craft stick so that she would see the Chinese characters while pegging the craft sticks.  Chinese is a minority language for our family, so I try to incorporate characters into fun activities all of the time!

Instead of rote memorization of flashcards, this activity encourages young learners to recognize characters when they are naturally inclined to look at them.  You can do this in any language: English, Korean, Spanish, French, etc!

Important vocabulary:

  • 衣夹 (Yī jiā / clothespin, peg)
  • 夹 (Jiā / clip)
  • 红, 橙, 黄, 绿, 蓝, 紫, 粉 (hóng, chéng, huáng, lǜ, lán, zǐ, fěn/ red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, pink)
  • 原色 (Yuánsè / primary color)
  • 二次色 (Èr cì sè / secondary color)
Mini colorful clothespins

What you need for craft stick pegging:

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  1. Mini clothespins (plain or colored)
  2. Craft sticks (plain or colored)
  3. Paint (optional)
  4. Sharpie marker
  5. Construction paper (optional)
  6. Circle stencil (optional)

How to set up craft stick pegging:

  1. If using plain clothespins and crafts sticks, paint each carefully and set dry
  2. Label each craft stick with corresponding character: 红, 橙, 黄, 绿, 蓝, 紫 (hóng, chéng, huáng, lǜ, lán, zǐ/red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple)
  3. Peg matching craft stick
  4. Optional: cut circles and turn each craft stick and peg set into beautiful flowers!

Invitation to create

This basic activity turned into an invitation to be creative for my daughter!

After simple color matching, my daughter decided that the mini clothespins would be little leaves and added circles to make flowers!

How adorable are these little flowers?!

If you try this Peg and Color Match activity, let us know!  Leave a comment and don’t forget to tag a photo #ChalkAcademy on Instagram and Facebook!

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