Lately I’ve been on a quest for some fun, educational activities to do with my 17-month old. I suppose that kids should just be allowed to play. After all, my childhood was pressure-free. But still, I’d like to think of some ways to incorporate learning into playtime.
I found a few different ideas. Unfortunately, since I have no idea where I found them, I can’t credit the source. However, I’m going to share my take on them.
First of all is storytime. My daughter is a wiggly worm, so getting her to sit still for an entire story can be a challenge. So I choose short, to-the-point books with graphics that she will enjoy. She prefers books with photographs in them or touch-and-feel books.
To augment the stories, we colour pictures or do activities that relate to the stories. Okay, let me rephrase that. We haven’t done much of this yet, but that’s because I only got the idea last week. There are TONS of free, online resources that offer free colouring pages and free activity ideas on a variety of themes. So if our book of the day is Usborne’s “That’s not my Rabbit!”, we’ll colour some rabbit pictures, scrunch up our noses and make bunny faces, and pretend to hop to music.
Last week, while running my friend’s daycare for a day, we read “Bear Hunt”. We did actions to the story, coloured bear pictures, sang bear songs, and hid bears in the backyard so we could go on a “real” bear hunt. I also made a bear puppet and brought along a realistic-looking stuffed bear. All of the kids had a lot of fun. I’ll admit, I had a blast as well.
Using internet resources, there is no end to the activities that you can find to augment story time. Most of the activities use materials on hand, making them budget-friendly as well. But, most importantly, there is no end to the fun that you can have as you do these things together.