Bead Counter

This rainbow bead counter helps little ones with counting and color sorting, and is so cute and colorful! Kids LOVE using this in so many ways! In addition to all the fun, they are working on pincer grip, hand strength and cognitive development!


  • Colorful Pony Beads
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Dowels
  • Paint Markers
  • Cardboard

How To

  • Take your box or piece of cardboard and measure out an equal distance divided by ten.
  • To work on some visual coordination skills, I suggest organizing this in a rainbow format, but you can use whatever colors you want!
  • Using paint markers, write the numbers on the side of the box and color in the top portion of the box. I find paint markers dry much faster than paint, and they do not chip like paint!
  • Using a skewer, poke ten holes along the top section, centering the hole above the number.
  • Place a dollop of hot glue on the hole and stick the dowel through (make sure it goes all the way through so that each dowel is evenly lined up)
  • Finally, count out beads to correspond with the number and color.
Bead Counter - DIY - Playgarden Online
Bead Counter - DIY - Playgarden Online
Bead Counter - DIY - Playgarden Online
Bead Counter - DIY - Playgarden Online
Bead Counter - DIY - Playgarden Online


Color Recognition Color Recognition
Pincer grip Pincer grip
Number recognition Number recognition
Hand Strength Hand Strength
Sorting and classifying Sorting and classifying

Tips with Miss Charlotte

Miss Charlotte - Teacher Playgarden

There are many ways to set this up, and let me remind you- there is no right way! You can line up individual bowls that separate the beads by color, or you can place them all into one shallow bowl. I chose one shallow bowl because I didn’t have ten identical bowls.

At first, Joy explored color sorting. Then, she began to notice how the numbers on the side of the box matched the colors on top. In random order, she counted out the beads and matched them by color, and placed them on the dowel. She made observations comparing the amount of beads on each dowel. This was a wonderful and organic way to introduce math vocabulary (smallest vs. largest and greater than vs. less than)!  

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