Muffin Tin Trap and Rescue for Preschool Cutting Practice

by | Jan 27, 2021

Are you tired of the same old dull printout worksheets when trying to teach your preschooler to use scissors and cut? You definitely need to give this amazing and unique cutting activity a try!

By putting a twist on cutting practice, we found an entire new way to teach scissor skills while having tons of fun along the way!

Plus, this activity is so simple that you could introduce toddlers as young as 2.5 to cutting practice and scissor safety.

Teach your preschooler cutting skills & scissor practice with this fun fine motor activity using counting bears, painters tape, & a muffin tin

It is important that your children have basic foundational skills with scissors before allowing them to use freely. Teach your child how to hold, open, shut, walk with, and put away scissors before even teaching how to use them to cut.

This will ensure that your child knows how to be safe with scissors and will also increase their confidence in using them.

Also, be sure to use toddler-approved safety scissors that don’t have sharp edges. These scissors cut through paper, but don’t have blades that will cut skin or their hair.

Preschool Cutting Skills

Your preschooler will not learn how to hold scissors and cut in one practice. The ability to do these things develops over time and will come with practice.

It is important to be patient with your child as they learn to develop and strengthen the fine motor skills it takes to cut properly.

Your chid’s scissor practice will get better with time – and lots of practice. Remind your little one to keep trying and to not give up.

Allow several opportunities to practice using scissors to allow your child the best opportunity for successfully learning this skill.

What You Need:

What to Do:

Teach your preschooler cutting skills & scissor practice with this fun fine motor activity using counting bears, painters tape, & a muffin tin

Setting up this activity is simple, however, it does require a little creativity. Simply add one bear in each section of the muffin tin and then put painters tape in each direction to lock the bears inside.

Now here is where the creativity comes in – a fun way to add some imaginary play to this activity is to make up a story as to why the bears are trapped!

Tell your preschooler the story and explain that the bears need your help to get free!

Set scissors out and explain that they must cut the tape to free the bears.

Teach your preschooler cutting skills & scissor practice with this fun fine motor activity using counting bears, painters tape, & a muffin tin

Learning Through Play

At this age, your child is still learning primarily through play and play based activities. Your preschooler can learn skills such as language, math, motor skills, cognitive abilities, and more just through play.

Allowing your child the opportunity to play to learn will not only keep your child entertained but will also increase their developmental skills as well. Win/Win for everyone!

In this activity alone your child will have the opportunity to strengthen the following skills:

  • Fine Motor Skills
  • Cognitive Abilities
  • Language
Teach your preschooler cutting skills & scissor practice with this fun fine motor activity using counting bears, painters tape, & a muffin tin

Fine Motor Skills

Your child’s fine motor skills will be increased by using the scissors carefully, opening and closing. By cutting the tape your child is perfecting and strengthening the muscles in their hands.

Your child will also increase their fine motor skills as they use the pincer grasp to fish out the bears from their entrapment.

You may also choose to add a pair of tweezers (or large tweezers) and encourage your child to retrieve the bears with this tool.

Cognitive Abilities

As your child is playing and rescuing the bears they are using their problem-solving skills to decide which pieces of tape to cut to free the bears. You can also increase this developmental skill by asking questions such as:

  • What color is this bear?
  • How many bears have you helped to free?
  • How many bears are left trapped?
Teach your preschooler cutting skills & scissor practice with this fun fine motor activity using counting bears, painters tape, & a muffin tin

Language Skills

It is important to talk to your child through any activity you are completing. Adding any type of conversation or words to your activities increases your child’s language skills.

Your child will be introduced to new words and concepts as you use words to describe what is happening throughout the activity. Be sure to also include words such as:

  • In
  • Out
  • On
  • Under
  • Left
  • Right

You can also continue the language skills by continuing the story you created from before. Ask your child why they think the bears became trapped. Or what they think will happen next in the story now that the bears are free!

Your child will have a blast with this fun and unique cutting practice activity and you will appreciate the fact that they are developing skills that will last a lifetime.


Do you plan to use this activity to help your child with their cutting practice? Let me know how it goes!

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