Solve Toothpick Puzzles! Activity

3.7 based on 114 ratings
Updated on May 6, 2014

Looking for a way to engage your family over dinner? What if you could practice some spatial reasoning skills as well? These fun toothpick puzzles are easy to set up at the dinner table, and if your child gets stumped all you'll have to do is refer to the answers for help. The best part about this activity is that you'll be challenging your child to think geometrically while still having fun!

What You Need:

  • A copy of the toothpick puzzles (see below).
  • 24 toothpicks
  • A coin

What You Do:

  1. Pick one of the puzzles.
  2. Lay out the toothpicks in the pattern you see on the paper.
  3. Tell your family how you want them to change the pattern.
  4. Watch them go!
  5. Once they've solved the first puzzle, move on to the next one.
  6. The answers are included, but it’s more fun if you only refer to them as a last resort.


Cindy Donaldson, BS Mathematics, taught Math, Business, and Computer Science at Menlo-Atherton High School for seven years. She has also worked as a tutor for SAT and SAT II test preparation. She is the mother of two young daughters.

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