DIY Ball Run

DIY Ball run

My neighbour was recycling this giant flat piece of cardboard and I immediately thought-  BALL RUN!

Marble runs are fun to make with older children but they aren’t safe for toddlers because of the marbles being choking hazards. This section of cardboard was big enough to make ramps that fit a medium sized ball.


We leaned the cardboard against our pretend kitchen area and put a stool in front of it to keep it steady.


The older children decided on how to arrange the ramps and how to tape them in place.


This was a very forgiving project because if any section of ramp didn’t work, we adjusted it with tape.


We cut a hole at the end of each ramp so that the ball would fall through to the next level of ramps.


You could also make this into a car ramp by making one big sloped run. Toddlers LOVE to watch cars speed down ramps.

I love how the children worked together (one at the start of the ramp and one at the bottom) when they sent the balls rolling.


The children had fun trying different sizes of balls and toys to see what would work through the ramps.

This ball ramp activity could be extended into vocabulary practice for toddlers (down, fast, roll, etc), counting practice for preschoolers (count the balls as they exit the last ramp) or a problem solving building activity for school-agers.

I finally got a picture of the actual ball in motion!


So the next time you have a big clean piece of cardboard, grab it for your daycare children, it will provide hours of fun!


Interested in more ideas on how to reuse cardboard? Check out my Pinterest Board “Cardboard Boxes’ for over 60 ideas of free cardboard fun!


  1. Great idea! We will be using this!

  2. This is perfect, it reminds me of a marble race I had as a child. It had such a simple design but was my favorite toy. Despite all the technology that exists today, it is still a favorite of the children when family comes over. It’s too much of a safety issue to use at our facility but we can make this instead. Thanks!

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