TeachPlayLearn

Fun and easy activities to do with your toddler that promote early language and literacy

Halloween!

Having a two year old during the Halloween season is amazing. We have been having so much fun decorating and putting “ah-oh-ween” everywhere. 

Today we put up spiderwebs on the porch and the little girl helped to attach the little black spiders all over it. She was more interested on sitting on the pumpkins we got over the weekend but it was still fun. 

Our crafty activity today was using foam stickers of face parts and putting them on cut-out foam pumpkins. We have some crazy looking jack-o-lanterns in our window! 

Activity ( letter recognition, name knowledge):
While the little girl was in bed last night I cut out some small pumpkins from orange construction paper and wrote a letter of her name on each one. We will mix them up and arrange them correctly so they spell her name. She will be able to play with them for a few days and eventually we will glue them on a paper with a fence and learn the song 5 little pumpkins. The little girl’s name is only four letters so there will be an extra to add on. 🙂

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Decorations, crafts and treats. So much to do. The most exciting part for me is how much she has been enjoying the Halloween books I pulled out for her. We read a “ah-oh-ween” book every night!

Here are her favorites:

Froggy’s Halloween by Jonathon London

 
It’s Pumpkin Time by Zoe Hall


On Halloween Night by Harriet Ziefert

 
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Learning Colors

One of the things that the little girl has started figuring out lately is colors. She loves drawing with her crayons and markers and has started to learn the names of some colors. Not surprisingly, the first color she learned was pink. Green came next, then black and now red and blue.

Skill: Identifying Colors (either by matching and/or naming)

UntitledTo help foster this learning, and excitement about colors, we have been doing a lot of fun activities that involve colors. The easiest is just using the crayons and markers. Every time she picks out one to use I make sure to mention what color she is using and mention other things that are that color. Red marker= same as Elmo! She will usually go and find Elmo (her stuffy) to hold the crayon next to him. Easy and fun!

Activity: Color Scavenger Hunt

Red.A fun activity to do is a color scavenger hunt. I have a set of bean bags that I put in a bag and have the little girl (or me) pull out one. Whatever color comes out is the color we go roaming the house looking for. Since she is not even 2 yet, we do this together. For older kids, you could give them a basket to put the objects they find as they go on the scavenger hunt on their own. So fun! The little girl really enjoys this, and will sometimes start matching objects all on her own.

Materials needed-

paper bag

beanbags (or paper) in different colors

basket

Book: Pantone® Colors
Cool new book for the little girl.
I found this book at the deYoung Museum’s gift shop. It is wonderful. So bright and colorful. It has  so many different shades of each color. It is also a very simple, one word per page book that is perfect for toddlers and it is a great sized board book. You can check out my more detailed review and see some pics on my book blog, MariReads.

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Learning Letters!

One of the Pre K objectives in TX was being able to recognize 20 letters by the end of the school year. The majority of the kids that came through my classroom during my 9 years teaching started the year knowing 0-2 letters at the age of four. That is very low but thankfully I was able to get most up to or close to the objective.
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Plush letters

I was not a drill and kill teacher, Prekindergarten should be fun and learning at this age and younger should happen through play. There are so many crafts, games, songs and rhymes that can be used with your kids starting pretty young that will help them learn letters.

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Finding O’s on the plaque

To a toddler, finding letters is fun!  The little girl knows three letters, o e and a. She delights in finding these letters everywhere we go- park benches are her favorite. ‘O’ is most definitely her favorite letter but I wanted to get her as excited for the first letter in her name.

Today, I decided to pull an activity that I used to do the first week of school,  with some modifications, of course. I gave the little girl a cardboard E that I cut out from one of the many boxes that we have. She decorated it with markers and stickers (all things that begin with E). During the whole process I just continuously talked about the letter and all the different stickers. She loved it.

Markers! Stickers! A big letter to put in her room and play with!

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Please note, that there is nothing here about associating letters to their sounds. We are just playing with letters here. 🙂

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Magnetic Letters
 First posted on MariReads.
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Hello world!

Hoping this will be a place to share teaching strategies and fun kid activities. Right now, It will be a little silent until I figure out what to do with it. 🙂

Thanks for stopping by!

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