DIY Counting Sticks


So, you want to teach your child the basics of counting from 1-10? My research led me to Montessori counting sticks. I made mine for about £7 in total. I bought the wood from B&Q for about £5 and I bought tester pots of paint ( you only need one of each colour) for £1 each.


I used a jigsaw to cut the wood. The smallest length is 10 cm, then 20 cm and so on, until you reach 100 cm. There should be 10 lengths in total.


Next, I used masking tape to mark off the exact lengths of each colour in 10 cm increments! I started painting with red as each stick starts with red!


This is what they should look like once the tape is pulled off. You can choose to keep them like this or paint the rest blue to keep with the Montessori colours.


I chose to paint them with blue as well, so when the red dried completely, I taped off what I wanted to paint and painted the sections blue. Now I need to find some sort of way of making them glossy. Any ideas? Here are the completed counting sticks!


My daughter is a little too young to use them right now (unless I want to rearrange my lamps or destroy any breakables), but I think in the near future, they will initially help her understand the concept of larger and smaller (she can put them in size order); that numbers have meaning (counting using her hand to go up each colour); addition and subtraction of numbers to 10, and understanding one more/less etc. These are a valuable, hands-on way of teaching the foundation of mathematics…Or, you and your loved ones could use them as light sabres! The choice is yours!

3 responses »

  1. Glossy sticks: how about some craft varnish? You should be able to buy some fairly reasonably priced on eBay or something. I have some Sculpey gloss I used to varnish wooden beads after I’d painted them and that worked a treat!

  2. Pingback: Montessori Number Rods | Appreciating Minds

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