When researching our post about the coolest water activities for your yard, I noticed something pretty awesome: pool noodles are the hot crafting supply of the season. Maybe it’s because they’re only $1 each (or less) at dollar stores, or because their versatile texture are ideal for shape-shifting, but whatever the reason, cool pool noodle crafts for kids are everywhere. And they are awesome.

From games and activities to art and decor, here are some of the most creative uses of pool noodles we’ve ever seen.

At top: Pool Noodle Printing | Alisa Burke

Related: Fun summery crafts for kids that can keep the boredom at bay (yes!)

Cool pool noodle crafts: Tic Tac Toe by Ziggity Zoom

One of the best things about this tic tac toe game by Ziggity Zoom is that if you lose any of the Xs or Os, all you have to do is give the leftover pool noodles a few more snips, and boom. Extra pieces. Click over for the easy 3-step tutorial.

Cool pool noodle crafts: Pool Noodle Shark by JDaniel4's Mom

JDaniel4’s Mom may not have started off making this snappy pool noodle shark with a puppet in mind, but it sure looks like it could take on the job. Be sure to check out her site, because what Deirdre used for this fish’s teeth is so smart.

Cool pool noodle crafts: Pool Noodle Luminaries by Create Craft Love

Why get spendy with candles and luminaries when you can make something that’s just as cool — and floats! Create Craft Love’s sweet (and safe!) pool noodle luminaries would be perfect for lighting up a BBQ or summer party in the backyard. By the way, she has a ton more pool noodle hacks — don’t miss her fun and creative ideas.

Related: How to make a summer bucket list with your kids. It’s not too late!

Cool pool noodle crafts: Bubble Blowers by My Life with Littles

Any parent knows it’s very, very hard to go wrong with bubbles, but it’s especially exciting when kids realize they can come from things other than bubble wands. My Life with Littles has easy steps for making pool noodle bubble blowers, along with reasons why this craft is especially good for tiny hands.

Cool pool noodle crafts: Pool Noodle Light Saber by Full Circle Living

And since bubbles and pool noodles are obviously okay with canoodling, Full Circle Living combined them both into a light saber activity for a Star Wars party. The awesome noodles Megan made are perfect, inexpensive party take-homes too. All Free Kids’ Crafts’ video tutorial has easy instructions for making these fun pool noodle light sabers.

Cool pool noodle crafts: Marble Run by Frugal Fun 4 Boys and Girls

Frugal Fun 4 Boys and Girls shows that pool noodles can be creative and functional with this marble run idea for a kids’ STEM challenge. It’s like 3-D Chutes & Ladders! Click over to check out the creative constructions her kids came up with and get inspired to create your own.

Related: These cool summer activity books un-bore kids in no time

Cool pool noodle crafts: Pool Noodle Printing by Alisa Burke

Younger kids might need a little help with both parts of Alisa Burke’s idea for pool noodle printing (also shown at top) — turning it into a patterned shape roller and then actually using it to roll out shapes. But how fun to pick out different materials to put on the noodle and see what textures you can make! Alisa has some cool suggestions at her site so be sure to check it out before you get started.

Cool pool noodle crafts: Pool Noodle Tennis Racket by In the Know Mom

In the Know Mom gets pool noodles back into the pool, but not without a total makeover: Sarah turns them into water tennis rackets first. They look like they’d be a blast in the pool (and a fun game addition to our list of creative pool games) — and, honestly, her tutorial makes it all look so very doable.

Cool pool noodle crafts: Art Bot by Handmade Kids Art

This pool noodle art bot by Handmade Kids Art is insane! You just need a few materials to make this kids’ drawing toy — including one totally unexpected supply that actually makes this thing electronic. So smart. And crafty!

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