Teach colors and shapes with this easy crochet toy pattern.
Below you will find the complete pattern and instructional photos for this shape and color sorting crochet toy pattern. You will also find all the materials, stitches, gauge and sizing information. If you would like all of this in a nicely formatted printable format, you can purchase the Ad-Free Large Print PDF Pattern.
Teaching With a Crochet Toy
This crochet toy can be used in several ways to teach colors, shapes and even sizes. Here are four fun ideas for teaching with this toy.
Sort by Color
Use either the matching shapes or some colored toys like these counting bears to let the child sort the colors onto the mat.
Sort By Shapes
Use the shape pieces and have the child sort the shapes into piles. This is a great exercise to do right after they have sorted everything by color. It will extend the amount of time they spend playing with the one toy.
Sort by Size
In order to let the kids sort by size, you will need to use a different size hook for certain shapes. I recommend using a size E (3.5mm), size H (5mm) and Size J (6.5mm) hooks to get a noticeable size difference. Ask the child which triangle is the largest, and smallest. Have them lay them out from large to small.
Shape Scavenger Hunt
Hide all the shapes in a room and let the kids run around and find them. When they find them they need to put them on the right square on the mat. If you have more than one child, you can make this a game with a winner. Assign each child certain colors to find to win.
There are countless ways to use this pieces while teaching kids these basic concepts. The will have hours of fun.
Use up your Yarn Stash
Do not feel like you have to use the brightest cleanest primary and secondary colors for this project. Use the colors you have in your stash. You can even add black, brown, grey and pink. These were the colors my son was required to know before kindergarten.
A Beginner-Friendly Crochet Toy Pattern
I was happy to make this a beginner pattern. You will only need to know how to half double crochet, single crochet and increase using a single crochet.
The only technique I would not call a beginner technique is how to crochet into the side of rows. I have a video below to teach you this technique or you can simply skip this part of the pattern. The shape edges may look a little rough but they will still clearly be a triangle and square.
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Purchase the Premium Ad-Free PDF Pattern (Three Patterns in One)
Below you will find the free pattern with all the instructional photos and videos needed to complete the pattern, but I am also aware that several of us like to crochet on the couch, in the car, or in bed with a print out of the pattern. This is why I also offer a nicely formatted ad-free large font PDF version of the pattern. You can print the pattern and take it on the go with you or tuck it into your project bag or basket.
In this premium PDF, I have included all three quick and easy crochet toy patterns including. the ball toss game, the color and shape sorting and an unreleased toy pattern.
I moved all the photos to the end of the PDF so you can reference them as you needed them and print just the pattern without using up as much ink. This Premium PDF version of the patterns can be purchased on Etsy.
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Don’t forget to check out all the free patterns at Winding Road Crochet. You may just find a new favorite project. Here are some great patterns you will love.
Shape and Color Sorting Crochet Toy
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0.65 oz or 34 yds Red Heart Super Saver in each color
Crochet Hook Size H (5mm)
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Stitches and Abbreviations
CH – Chain
SC – Single Crochet
HDC – Half Double Crochet
SLST – Slip Stitch
ST(s) – Stitch(es)
Gauge and Size
Gauge is not super important in this pattern, but if you change your hook for each shape you will be able to sort the shapes by size.
6 HDC x 5 rows = 2 inches
My shapes were roughly 2 inches tall and the mat measures 14.5″ by 9″.
Shape and Color Sorting Crochet Toy Pattern
-Written in US terms.
– I do not count my turning chain as a stitch.
-The circle is worked in continuous rounds while all other pieces are turned at the end of the work.
– Consider working the shapes in different size hooks to allow for size sorting.
Crochet Toy: Sorting Mat
CH 15 with Green, CH 17 with Yellow.
Row 1: HDC in 3rd CH from the hook. HDC in next 14 CH, Change color to Green, HDC in last 15 CH. (30)
Row 2 – 13: CH2, HDC in first 15 STs. Change Colors, HDC in last 15 STs.
Row 14: Change Color to Blue, Ch2, HDC in first 15 STs, Change Color to Orange, HDC in last 15 STs.
Row 15 – 26: CH2, HDC in first 15 STs. Change Colors, HDC in last 15 STs.
Row 27: Change Color to Red, Ch2, HDC in first 15 STs, Change Color to Purple, HDC in last 15 STs.
Row 28 – 39: CH2, HDC in first 15 STs. Change Colors, HDC in last 15 STs.
Fasten off and weave in all your ends. Your sorting mat is finished.
Triangle Sorting Piece (Make 1 of Each Color)
Row 1: Work 2 SC in 2nd CH from Hook. (2)
Row 2: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next ST. (3)
Row 3: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next 2 STs. (4)
Row 4: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next 3 STs. (5)
Row 5: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next 4 STs. (6)
Row 6: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next 5 STs. (7)
Row 7: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next 6 STs. (8)
Row 8: CH1, turn, Work 2 SC in first ST. SC in next 7 STs. (9)
CH1, working down the side of the rows, SC into the side of each row. CH2 at the triangle point and Sc in the side of each row on the other side of the triangle. Fasten off after reaching the next corner.
(Note: We only worked down two sides of the triangle to make nice clean edges.)
Square Sorting Piece (Make 1 of Each Color)
Row 1: SC in 2nd CH from hook and each CH across. (8)
Row 2-10: CH1, turn, SC in next 8 STs.
CH1, working down the side of rows 1-10, Work 1 SC into the side of each row. CH2, turn the corner, work 1 SC into the opposite side of each starting CH, CH2, turn the corner, Work a SC into the other side of each row. When you reach the last corner, fasten off and weave in your ends.
Circle Sorting Piece (Make 1 of Each Color)
NOTES: The circle is worked in continuous rounds. Use a stitch marker to mark the last stitch of your round.
Row 1: Work 6 SC into a Magic Circle.
Alternate Row 1: CH2, Work 6 SC into the 2nd CH from hook.
Row 2: *Work 2 SC in next ST* repeat from *to* a total of 6 times. (12)
Row 3: *Work 2 SC in next ST, SC in next ST* repeat from *to* a total of 6 times. (18)
Row 4: *Work 2 SC in next ST, SC in next 2 STs* repeat from *to* a total of 6 times. (24)
Row 5: *Work 2 SC in next ST, SC in next 3 STs* repeat from *to* a total of 6 times. (30)
Row 6: SLST into the next 2 STs and fasten off. Weave in your ends.
Complete one circle, square and triangle of each color that you have on your sorting mat and your sorting toy is complete.
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