I’m a librarian and am always looking for fun simple ways to entertain my library kiddos. I wanted an activity center that is lightweight and portable - could be stand alone or table top and not require electricity. The activity center that I built hearkens back to the Lite-Brite toy of my childhood using simple golf tees as the pegs. Both the Lite-brite panel and the geoboard panel encourage creativity, imagination, and engineering skills. Adults and children alike will enjoy the simplicity of this pegboard activity center.
Step 1: Gather Supplies
- 3 - 2’x4’ pegboard panels
- 3 - PVC pipes (1")
- 6 - PVC caps (1")
- 2 - packages of 100 8” black cable ties (about ¾ of the second bag will be used)
- 1 - PVC cutter
- 2 - cans of flat black spray paint
- 1 - small bottle of white acrylic paint
- 1 - small bottle of black acrylic paint
- 3 - #8-32x1½” Nuts and Bolts combo pack (75 per pack with a few left over)
- Wood Golf Tees - Plain and assorted colors
- (Optional) Wire snips
Step 2: Prep the PVC Pipes
BE EXTREMELY CAREFUL HERE! Never leave a PVC cutter unsupervised!
The caps will sit on the ends of the PVC pipes, so you'll need to measure each pipe 2 inches longer than the pegboard. Use a Sharpie or magic marker to mark the pipe.
Use your PVC cutter to cut the pipe to the marked length. Don't worry if the angle of the cut isn't precise. The cap will be covering that up anyway.
Step 3: Time to Paint
Paint your 3 pegboard pieces, 3 PVC pipes, and 3 PVC caps with black spray paint - two coats. Let set overnight.
Step 4: Assemble the Geoboard
Yay! You’ve watched paint dry, now let’s start assembly. Turn on your favorite show and get busy affixing approx. 200 nuts and bolts to the pegboard panel that you are going to use for the geoboard. I did this step by hand so it took a while. You may/may not have better luck using a drill to speed the process up.
Step 5: Attach Pegboard Panel to PVC Pipe
Lay one pegboard panel on a flat surface. Hold the assembled PVC pipe/cap piece to the edge of the pegboard panel. Run a cable tie through the top most hole on the first row of holes. Wrap the cable tie around the PVC pipe and back through the second hole on the same row. Continue this process skipping every other row down the length of the PVC pipe.
Step 6: Continue Attaching PVC Pipes to Pegboard Panels Making a Triangle
Connecting the other two pegboard panels is a little more tricky as it requires dexterity and sometime a second pair of hands.
Once all the pipes are attached, you can tidy up the appearance by clipping the zip tie tails. Wire snips make this very easy.
Step 7: Paint Peg Jumping Games
Your pegboard Lite-Brite/Geoboard is assembled! Now time to paint some more. The third pegboard panel is painted with shapes which may be used for peg jumping games. First, I used golf tees to the make shapes that I wanted and then used painter’s tape to mark them off. The finished product is two layers of white paint. While you’re painting, go ahead and touch up the edges of the pegboard to make it look nice and neat.
Step 8: Time to Play!
Grab some golf tees and get creative! If you prefer a bit of structure, you can find several templates available on the internet to use with the geoboard. Have fun!