Tag Archives: motor skills

Happy Valentine’s Day!

14 Feb

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Since my oldest is in pre-K this year, she is having a Valentine’s Day party at school.  She decided that she wanted to make all her valentines instead of buying them at the store.  Which is fine with me!  It takes a little extra work, but it gives her a chance to work on her cutting and writing skills at the same time.  I am all about working on learning skills and making it not seem like school work.  Like, at the grocery store, we talk about colors and sizes of fruits and vegetables as we go through the produce section.  If we are getting more than one of something, I have them count with me as we put them in the cart.  At the park, we talk about nature or count the steps to get up to the slide.

Anyway, back to Valentine’s Day.  It kind of snuck up on me, so we had to make a run to the store to get our supplies this morning.  At a Friday Fun Day at a local church, we did a cute craft that was a butterfly with a sucker through the middle.  I figured there would be enough candy, so I decided to change it up a little.  Instead of butterflies, we decided to make hearts, because Katie really likes cutting hearts.  If you ask her to make a picture for you, she insists it has to be in the shape of a heart.  I picked up some red posterboard at the store for this.  Then, we found pencils to put through the center.  Next, I had her write her name on each one.  She struggled with this at first, but then I drew 2 lines for her to write between and she did much better after that.  We also picked out some sticky foam shaped hearts to put on them.  We had fun doing it together and they turned out pretty cute.

Toddler School – Week 4

16 Oct

Last week we weren’t able to meet because my friend’s kids were sick.  So, even though this week is Fall Break for the older kids, we got together and had the older kids do some of their own activities and do some activities with the younger kids.

I needed to do some prep work still for the activities, so first the kids all colored the D worksheet I made.  Again, this is to introduce the letter for recognition and simple words that start with that letter.  For the older kids, we had them also write their names and write uppercase and lowercase Ds.  Next, I had gotten some foam pumpkins and various Halloween foam stickers in the dollar section at Target a few weeks back, so I got those out for them all to decorate.

Next, we divided up the older kids and the younger kids.  For the older kids, I picked out pipe cleaners in colors the corresponded to the bead colors that I have.   Then, I put a piece of tape at the top of each pipe cleaner and put a number.  Then, I had them sit and put beads on the pipe cleaners, they had to match the color and put as many beads as the number on the tape.  They both did really well with this.

While the older kids did this, the younger kids got to play with a sensory tub.  I had purchased some foam puzzles at the dollar store, 2 with numbers 0 – 9, 2 with the uppercase alphabet, and 2 with the lowercase alphabet.  I took the numbers out of the puzzle and put them in a plastic bin, then put egg noodles in to bury the numbers.  So, they had to dig through the noodles to find the numbers and put them in the puzzle.  They had a lot of fun playing with the noodles and finding the numbers.  We did work on recognizing the numbers as well.

The younger kids were pretty much done at that point, it was enough activities for them for one day.  The older kids wanted to try out the noodles in the tub, so I got out the uppercase and lowercase letter puzzles and hid those letters for them.

Next week, we’ll do the letter E, and I’m on the hunt for some new activities!

Toddler School – Week 2

24 Sep

This week for Toddler School we had a few extras, my friend was watching a 3-year-old and 1-year-old, plus another friend with a 2-year-old decided to join our weekly learning adventures.  Even though it was a little chaotic, we still got through a few activities.

First, we started with coloring a Letter B worksheet that I created.  I also brought some toys that start with the letter B, a bird, a bear, a baby, and a book.

Then, we went outside to do the color match activity with the foam shapes that we did last week.  However, instead of the water beads, I filled the tubs with bird seed.  We chose bird seed because we knew it would be messy, so we wanted to do this outside, but were worried about not getting all the rice picked up and didn’t want the birds to get rice.  Plus, bird seed starts with B, so it fit in with the letter B theme.


That activity got a little out of control, with bird seed all over, so we moved on to pipe cleaner activities.  First, I got out the beads to work on motor skills by getting the beads on the pipe cleaners.  We tried to do some color matching with this, matching bead and pipe cleaner color, but focused more on just getting the beads on.  That was challenging enough for little hands!  Next, we got out a plastic strainer with holes to make pipe cleaner rainbows.

After that, we just played and watched a movie until it was time to get the big kids.  We have some fun things planned already for next week!

Pipe Cleaners and Bead Counting

19 Sep

This morning, my oldest was pushing all my buttons, so I remembered that I finally got beads last week at Target (400 count package).  So, I put those in a bowl, got out the pipe cleaners and had her start on an activity.  We picked out a pipe cleaner to match each color bead.  For the first 3, I had her put 5 matching color beads on the pipe cleaner.  For the other 4, I had her put 10 matching color beads on each pipe cleaner.  She finished it pretty quick, but it had the effect of calming her down and keeping her busy for about 15 minutes.

For the next time we do this activity, I will be adding some number tags to each pipe cleaner so she has to recognize that number and then add that number of beads to the pipe cleaner.  Then, once she gets the beads on, we can use them to do math activities, like addition and subtraction.

Fun with Pipe Cleaners!

6 Sep

While I was at the dollar store last week getting the supplies for the Popcorn Sight Words game, I saw pipe cleaners and decided to grab 2 packs.  Now, I say pipe cleaners, but you may also call them chenille sticks or stems, which is how they are sometimes labeled at at the store.  I wasn’t really sure what I was going to do with them yet, but I know that there are plenty of fun things to do with them, plus they are great for working on fine motor skills.

First, we made some shape, circle, triangle, square, rectangle, heart.  Then we started making some letters, B, b, R, J, L.  Lots more possibilities there!

Then, I remembered  an idea I had seen on Pinterest, and got out my colanders.  Mine do not have circles, just lines, but it still worked well.  The girls had a blast with this!  We decided we were making rainbows!

Next time I am at the dollar store, I will look for some beads to use for stringing on the pipe cleaners.  I also might make up a box with holes and colors around the holes to do color matching along with putting the pipe cleaners in holes.  What kinds of activities do you do with pipe cleaners?

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