Make Your Own Mancala Board

Let’s Play a Game!

Today for Black History Month one of our Occupational Therapists is going to teach you all about Mancala. Mancala was first created in Egypt and is one of the oldest known games still played today! It is not only a fun game to play with friends, but it also is great for fine motor development. Watch the video below to learn more.


Click here for the video! 


What is Mancala?

Mancala is a two-player game that consists of a board and small playing pieces. Variations of this game go all the way back to the 7th century! One of the cool things about playing mancala is you can use anything you find laying around your house. Historically, it has been played with beans, seeds, stones, and holes that they dug in the ground. The object of the game is to capture as many pieces as you can.

Click this link for a full list of the rules and how to play.


Skills Addressed:

Mancala is a great way to work on a variety of developmental skills. Some of those skills are:

  • Pincer grasp
  • Turn taking
  • Crossing mid-line
  • In-hand manipulation
  • Emotional regulation
  • Executive functioning
  • Following directions
  • Motor planning


Supplies Needed:

You can gather anything you find around your house and get creative with it! Our OT used an egg carton, scissors, tape, pom-poms, beads, and googly-eyes.



  1. Gather your supplies.
  2. Cut top off egg carton and cut two additional pieces out of the top on each side.
  3. Flip over the bottom of your egg carton and tape your two pieces from the top to each side of the bottom.
  4. Fill your board with your game pieces.
  5. Play the game and have fun! You can make this more challenging by using tongs or tweezers.


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