Some recyclables, a hot glue gun and an hour are all you need to pull together this DIY Halloween Sorting Game! 

The first time I made a similar toy was last year, after Katie from Early Childhood Fun 101 posted a fun Christmas version. Since the kids loved the Christmas ones I made so much I decided to bring it back for Halloween this year. 

These sorting games are great for a number of reasons. They work on hand-eye coordination, they practice the use of different tools like tongs and they’re great for practicing colour, shape and size recognition – all depending on what pieces you decide to use. The bonus is that it’s made out of recycled materials – low waste and saving waste from landfill. 

Here’s the how to make the base for a DIY Halloween sorting game! 


  • A clean cardboard base (cereal box, delivery box) 
  • Toilet paper and/or paper towel tubes 
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun + glue 
  • Optional: Halloween shapes to trace


Grab those tubes and start cutting!

I usually cut them to be able half an inch tall. That yields about 5-6 circles per toilet paper tube and obviously way more if you’re using a paper towel tube. You can use other tubes, like fabric rolls or from a poster, but toilet paper and papertowel tubes are typically the fastest and easiet to cut. 

Don’t have any? Don’t stress! Hop onto a local Facebook group or put the message out to family. You’re bound to find people who have been saving them. 


Next you’ll want to get your base ready. Almost any type of cardboard will be good and strong for this – cereal box, pizza box, Amazon box, you name it. As long as it sits flat you can use it. 

I like tracing shapes for this and I have a set of shapes for each season that get stored away when I’m not using them. You can always freehand it if not!


Once your base is ready then it’s time to add on your cardboard circles. Using your glue gun, add a layer of glue around the circles edge and then press down onto the base. 

I like to start in the centre and then work my way out from there. You definitely don’t need every space covered in the circles! Since they’re fairly thin, you can also curve them slightly to fit into spaces. 

Once it’s complete, it should look something like this:

If you wanted to, you could add some colour dots (stickers, marker or paint) to the bottom of each circle if you’re planning on having it be a colour co-ordinating game. I did a mixture: the ghost stayed plain, I made a pumpkin with coloured dot guides and I have a bat that has removable coloured dots!

Our favourite tongs are these white ones you see in the photo that I once found at Michaels. I bought them on clearance once upon a time and couldn’t find them on the website to link them, so they seem to have been discontinued! 

Some types of utensils you could use are: 

  • Kitchen tongs
  • Chopsticks 
  • Serving spoon
  • Regular spoon
  • A straw

Some types of filler materials you could use are: 

  • Pompoms
  • Buttons
  • Little plastic characters
  • Wooden loose parts
  • Squeeze pouch tops 



Plan on trying one of these out?

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