How to Make Prayer Beads for Children

Written by margaret morris
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How to Make Prayer Beads for Children
(Burke/Triolo Productions/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Making prayer beads is a simple project for children. Very young kids can string large beads on heavy cord, and older children will be able to manipulate smaller beads and arrange spacer beads between them. Kids will enjoy making prayer beads for personal use or to give as gifts to grandparents, teachers and friends.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 1 large "guru" bead
  • 27 smaller beads
  • 2 to 3 medium-sized beads
  • Cord
  • Scissors

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  1. 1

    Cut a piece of cord 1 1/2 times the desired finished length.

  2. 2

    Tie a knot at one end of the cord, leaving a long tail that's equal to half of the extra measurement you allowed.

  3. 3

    Slide the first bead onto the cord, and push it all the way to the knot. To make a mala, or Buddhist prayer bead set, slide a large bead, or "guru," on first.

  4. 4

    Slide 27 smaller beads onto the cord, and tie a knot in the cord after the last bead.

  5. 5

    Knot the two tail ends of the cord together.

  6. 6

    Slide several medium-sized beads through both tail ends of the cord, and knot the ends of the cord below the medium-sized beads.

  7. 7

    Make a simple tassel by fraying the ends of the cord below the medium-sized beads.

Tips and warnings

  • Use heavy cord and extra-large beads for very young children, and have an adult cut the cord and help tie the knots.
  • To make a rosary, string five sets of 10 beads with one large bead between them. On the tails, string one bead followed by a space, three beads followed by a space, and a final bead. Rather than making a tassel, knot a crucifix at the end.
  • To make Anglican prayer beads, string four sets of seven beads with one large bead between them. On the tail, string two large beads and knot an Anglican cross at the end.

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