Marble-Maze Game Craft

Posted by Debra Haagen on

Here's another fun idea for a gift/craft idea kids can make.  I shared this on my personal blog in 2011.

My son built Marble Mazes for some of our family friends who have children for Christmas, and of course he made one to keep for himself and his siblings!  I found this craft in a magazine - I believe it was Disney's Family Fun magazine several years ago - along with an article describing how these were popular games for children in the late 1800s and early 1900s, long before the age of DSs and PSPs!  Unfortunately, I can no longer find the magazine or the article.  You can rearrange the rubber bands in countless ways to make various mazes to roll the marbles through, then challenge your friends or siblings to roll the marble all the way to the end without dropping it.  Add more marbles for extra fun.


1) Have a piece of sturdy plywood cut to 1' x 1'.  
2) Use a pencil to draw a grid of 1-inch squares.  Paint each of the 100 squares in the center (10x10) different colors.  Paint the one-inch border around the edges a solid, dark color.
3) Hammer nails into corners of the squares.  The nails are a little close if you place them every inch, so you could place them every other square or make the squares themselves bigger - 1.5"x1.5" or 2"x2".  My son painted one-inch squares but then placed nails haphazardly in the corners of various squares, wherever he felt like putting them!
4) Stretch multi-colored rubber bands around the nails and add a marble.
My son is 11 and made 4 of these by himself, except for cutting the original piece of plywood, which my husband did.  If you have a boy who loves to get into Dad's tools and hammer anything in sight, this is a great project!  It also gave him a very simple application for all that geometry he's been doing.  He's the type of kid who doesn't care much to learn it if he doesn't see any useful application!
Happy crafting!


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