Tall Blocks, Small Animals

Books become more meaningful when you can expand the story to a hands-on activity. Here is one extension activity you can do with very little supplies.

IMG_8713

You’ll need to read the book Tall by Jez Alborough. (Hint: Stop by your local library and pick up a copy if you don’t own it.) Tall is about a few jungle animals who help a little monkey feel taller than he really is. This is a great book with very few words. You can use the illustrations to talk about what is happening on each page.

Next, get out the blocks or the LEGOs. You will also need a couple small animals or action figures. Now let your child’s imagination go wild. Let he/she build towers as tall as can be (just make sure no one is on the other side in case it falls!). When he/she is done building, place the small animal on top of the tower. Just how tall can the tower be before it falls over? Experiment with different shapes.

This is a great opportunity to talk with your child about the tower he/she is building. Ask questions like how tall do you think it can go before it will fall? What kind of tower is it? Why is the animal or action figure climbing so high? What is it the animal is trying to see?

Try to avoid yes/no questions as they require no other answer. To help expand your child’s vocabulary and comprehension of the story, you want to ask open ended questions.

Credit for activity idea: Teach Preschool.

Advertisements

Let’s Get Moving

Children are wiggly. Telling them to stand still or “stop it” doesn’t always work. (If it does, please comment below and share with us how you get your children to stop–we love tips and tricks!). In the meantime, I would like to share some of my favorite games you can play with your children when you are required to wait.

500_F_63632151_sP6F9A6VwUdQm0t2CMSTSJZ6PNnhxWSf


I Spy

One of my favorite games to play while standing in line, sitting in the car, or waiting for dinner to finish cooking is I Spy. It’s such a simple game, but it can be played in so many different ways depending on the age and development of your child. You can spy colors, objects that rhyme with a certain word, objects that start with a specific letter, or even objects that are a special shape. Take turns “spying for an object” with your child. Let them pick the object you have to identify, and let them find the object you spy.

Twenty Questions
Similar to I Spy, pick a person, place, or thing, and have your child ask you “twenty” questions as he tries to identify the object you chose.

Grandma’s House
Grandma’s House is a simple game that can be played in many different ways. Each person takes a turn always beginning with the phrase, “I’m going to Grandma’s house and I’m bringing…” And what he brings depends on what everyone decides is going to be the rule. It can be an object that starts with a certain letter of the alphabet (the most common version), objects that are compound words, words that start with a specific letter of the alphabet, words with two vowels together, etc.

So you’ve probably noticed these games do not require much movement. Bambini Travel has some great ideas on how to let your children get the wiggles out without being too disruptive to others. Click here for ideas on teaching comparing, number recognition, balancing, counting, gross motor development, and patterning.

What are your favorite ways to keep your children from getting too fidgety when they have to wait?