Tracing hands is the basic step to many hand print crafts and easy for a preschooler to understand and follow.
At the age of 2 ½ I taught my son Ashrith about tracing. I traced his hand all the time but after few days he started tracing my hand and within a month tracing his own hands .At first he needed help but later did it independently.
Now at the age 3, he traces his own hand and turns it into a bird.
Kids love to trace and with help from parents they can turn these hand prints in to wonderful crafts.
• Drawing paper /white paper
Water Play is so important for young children that it shouldn’t be available only outdoors in warm weather. Indoor water play can go on all year long!
What if u don’t have one of those expensive sand and water tables , you can use something you already have in home like a old baby bath tub or a 16 gallon plastic storage box .
Kids of all ages love to play with water, and of course have to be supervised, but you’d be surprised how long little water and few toys will provide entertainment.
I have a baby bath tub which I use as a water pond for my 3 year old.We make paper boats to float in the water or just play with bath toys like ducks and other animals.
Water play provides opportunities for imaginative play and at the same time, they use their minds as they explore why certain objects sink in water and others float. Children learn concepts such as empty/full, before/after, shallow/deep etc.
Caution Note: Water table or baby bath tub or plastic box anything used for water play must be cleaned regularly to prevent germs that can grow in warm, wet places. Always let items air dry before allowing children to play with them . Stay close to children when they are playing around water.Watch carefully for safe and successful play. Source for more information regarding water safety here.
Everytime I sat down to fold clothes, my son would either fall into the laundry basket or unfold all the clothes I already folded, so I was thinking of something which would keep him occupied while I am busy folding the clothes.
Matching Socks is a fun activity for kids, it keeps them occupied for a while.
• Lots of socks (different colors and patterns)
• Set up one sock of each pair on the bed or table
• Put the other sock of the pair in a pile
• Ask your kid to match each sock and lay it on top of it .
This activity helps kids differentiate between different colors & patterns and also develops their visual memory .
A delightful activity easy for parents to do and easy for kids to learn. Hand shadows are simple way to entertain kids, done by just positioning the hands and fingers.
I showed my 3 year old a few hand shadows like the dog, duck, butterfly. He loved making those shadows but right now he is so fascinated with dinosaurs, that he eats, sleeps and drinks dinosaurs.
You can see his imagination in his shadows too, he tried to make claws of dinos and t.rex faces.
Shadows not only help kids to learn and create shapes of various animals,birds but also expand their imagination.
Note: For older kids and during winter when there is no sunlight ,you will need a white wall and flashlight to make shadows.
Sing this song to add little more fun while making shadows.
See My Shadows
See my shadow, see my shadow
Move this way, move that way.
See it do what I do, see it do what I do,
It follows me, it follows me.
Whenever I sat down to write my grocery list or shopping list ,Ashrith would ask for pen and start scribbling down ,that is when I started to teach him to draw lines .I started with vertical and horizontal lines . He started showing a lot of interest in scribbling & drawing lines.
To encourage his creativity I bought him Fisher price basic doodle pro .The best thing about doodle pro was I didn’t have to watch him constantly .There was no fear of writing on the walls .We’ve saved a lot of paper too .Slowly he would ask me to draw cake, car, airplane etc and I will have him erase it. After few weeks, he himself started doodling in it and erased as he doodled as well. It has four stamps included a circle, a square, a triangle and a flower, stamping was fun but I watched him while using stamps.
Caution Note: Doodle Pro is recommended for 3+ and if u you using it for a younger child like I did, you take away the stamps before age 3 it would be safe to play with. If you still want to use stamps for under 3 then you have to watch them closely as mouthing the magnetic stamps can cause serious injuries.
As a stay at home mom, my 2 year old was always with me wherever I went, especially the kitchen while cooking .Every time I cook ,I see my toddler is engaged in something.
I make chapatis (indian wheat bread) almost every day. In the begin, he played with the dough but after a few days he started asking for the rolling pin too.
The very first time I gave him a ball of dough and rolling pin together, I was surprised ….
He made a little round circle… I mean…a tiny chapati
Now he is 3 and still loves to play with the dough and make chapatis.
Caution Note: Watch your toddler ,if he is mouthing the flour ,eating a little flour is not a problem but if consumed more can cause stomach ache b’cos the wheat flour is raw and uncooked which is difficult to digest .
Threading fruit loops is a fine motor skill activity, teaching toddlers good hand and eye coordination.
My son Ashrith 22months,was simply threading the cereal onto the chenille stem . After one or two times ,I noticed a change in his threading the cereal . He started making color patterns or putting alike colors together.
• Fruit Loops cereal
• Chenille stems/pipe cleaners
Caution Note: Chenille stems are sharp, always secure them at ends so that they don’t poke.
I am always looking for innovative ways to keep my 2 year old occupied while I am busy. This game helps in recognition and sorting Sun, Moon, Stars & Clouds.
• Foam shapes: Sun, Moon, Stars & Clouds (bought at CVS pharmacy store)
When Ashrith was 20 months old, he started recognizing the shapes .
Once he was perfect with recognition, I gave him small bowls to sort them.
At first I helped him a couple of times but very soon he did it independently.
Kids + Boxes = Non Stop Fun
Moving , unpacking, boxes everywhere was stressful but seeing my son playing brings a smile on my face.
Ashrith ,my son 17mnths was thrilled to play in the box. Joined him in the box is his cousin Sharanya ( 5yrs ).Both were happily playing in the box while we unpack most of the stuff.
Boxes can be so much fun for all ages .
Note: With every reuse of a box, a new one is prevented from entering the cycle. If the boxes are worn out and not in condition to reuse ,please don’t forget to drop them in the recycling bins .
Color Sorting Activity:
This activity is great for toddlers learning color recognition
- Color Bowls (Used Ikea Bowls)
- Foam Color Cubes ( Bought at Target Store)
Caution Note : The package states that these cubes are meant for 3yrs old and above.Foam cubes could be a choking hazard for toddlers who mouth things . So, I always watched my son Ashrith closely when using them .