• Ends - there is the short end, and the other end goes to the boat/mountain
  • Straight - just like it sounds, a straight section of rope
  • Bite - a bend in the rope
  • Loop - just like it sounds, a loop in the rope; there is a top and a bottom
  • over/under (interlace) - needs more exposition (todo) but the idea is that you alternate under/over (like weaving)


Many of these are variations of each other; suggested order to teach these:
  1. overhand
  2. figure-8
  3. stopper
  4. square
  5. thief
  6. sheet bend
  7. bowline
  8. bowline on a bight (i.e. located in the middle of the rope)

Untying is important, should be taught early (there's a trick to it).


Keeping the kids engaged is the key; some ideas:
  • A story (e.g. the thief's knot)
  • A race (e.g. stopper knot)
  • Gamification (rewards)

Thanks to RobM for sharing his wealth.


Knots 3D is a comprehensive reference, with animations; IOS and Android.

Survival Bracelets

These have gotten popular recently. I recently had a kids party where we made these and the visual instructions were very clear. I have scanned and uploaded those instructions as document, "". -- Hans Enders

Dog Chew Toy

Instructions from SPCA - We used this in the Bear Critter Care adventure.