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Nut and Bolt Mix Up Match

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Oh no! The nuts and bolts got mixed up. Bob and his team need your child’s help to sort and match the correct nut to the correct bolt.

Learning Goals
Sorting
Matching
Colors
Fine motor

Materials
Bolts
Nuts
Nail polish or paint

Directions

For this activity to work, you’ll need an equal number of matching nuts and bolts that fit together. Thread the nut on the bolt to make sure it’s easy to twist. If it gets caught, work on threading and unthreading it over the rough spot to smooth out any burrs. After you’ve tested the hardware, paint the top of each bolt a different color. Paint the outside of the nuts in matching colors. Once everything is dry, mix up the nuts and bolts. Have your child sort the nuts and bolts and match the colors by threading the correct color nut onto the matching colored bolt. 

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Talk About It
Matching and sorting are important stages of math development. In this activity, children first sort by shape, then by color. Talk to your child about the different ways objects can be sorted (e.g., size, shape, color, texture, etc.) and placed into sets. You can use everyday items like laundry and silverware as examples. 

Take It Further
Turn this into a memory game by hiding bolts under tented pieces of paper. You can also make it a more challenging game by using different sizes of nut and bolt pairs. 

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