Burlap Fish Fine Motor Craft for Kids

This fish craft is fun to make using burlap. You'll love the simple setup and the many opportunities for kids to learn as they play. Add these fun fish shapes to an ocean theme with early learners.. 

Burlap fish craft

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We've been crafting a lot with burlap, everything from a horse's mane to a bird's nest. It's an inexpensive material that is durable, easy to cut, and fun to work with to add a fringe!

We couldn't resist the opportunity to make a fish.  We designed two different options, and the results can be used as puppets for pretend play. 

The texture of the burlap, the flip of the fins, and the twinkle in the googly craft eyes provide sensory play along with imaginative play for kids. 

Burlap fish craft  

Have you ever heard of a square fish? Varieties of the angelfish as well as the boxfish have interesting square shapes. Exploring shapes with kids is part of the fun with this burlap craft.

In this activity, kids can make an oval fish and a square fish.

Related: bubble wrap fish


Supplies for flat fish or square fish

  • cardboard


Cardboard shapes used in this craft can be precut for kids.


Instructions for flat fish

Cardboard flat fish kids craft


1. Cut an oval shape from the burlap, with a tail shape included at the end of the oval.

2. Unravel the edges by pulling threads along the sides (to create fins) and at the tail.

3. Place the burlap fish on a piece of cardboard. Trace around the fish. 

Cut out the piece of cardboard slightly smaller than the burlap fish.


Cardboard fish preschool craft


4. Cut out a small cardboard rectangle to serve as a handle. Staple the handle to the back of the oval cardboard cutout. Tape to secure if necessary. 

Insert fingers into the handle to hold the fish like a puppet for pretend play, swimming up and down.

Flat fish craft for kids

5. Glue the burlap oval shape to the cardboard. 

6. Glue craft eyes to the fish.


Instructions for square fish

Easy fish craft for preschoolers


1. Cut a rectangle from the burlap fabric. 

2. Unravel a short side of the rectangle: pull threads until a long tail is formed. 

3. Unravel the top and bottom to form the fins.

4. Trim the threads of the tail away from the body of the fish so it forms a square.



Preschool fish craft pretend play


4. Cut a piece of cardboard the same size as the body, including the lower fin.  Cut a handle into a piece of cardboard as shown in the photo, large enough to form a handle form a handle.

Glue the fabric to the cardboard being careful to leave the handle open behind the lower fins so kids can insert their fingers.

 Square fish craft using burlap


5. Glue craft eyes to the fish.

With a flip of the fins, these little burlap fish are ready for pretend play! 


Easy burlap fish craft for kids


Learning through play

1. Encourage gross motor movements such as 'diving' and 'swimming' through the waves.

2. Spread a blue blanket on the floor and go fishing with a clothespin on the end of a skipping rope or shoelace.

3. Read books about fish.


 A Fish out of Water 


Good Night Little Rainbow Fish Board Book 


 More fish crafts!

Fish crafts for toddler to kindergarten age


 Crafts on Pinterest


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