Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Outdoor Play, Painting & Coloring Activity

Slide Painting – Outdoor Activity

Slide Painting is a fun & messy outdoor painting activity. This year, we set up our slide indoors even before the weather was warm outside. As much as the kids enjoyed sliding and playing on it, they loved to pretend play with their dolls. One day Miss D took her toy cars and started sliding it down to see what happens and got really excited. For a while, the slide was her ramp. That gave me the idea to try slide painting. We tried Painting with Cars a while back and kids seemed to enjoy it. So we used cars along with textured balls for this activity.

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What you need

  • Slide
  • Washable paint
  • Toy cars & textured balls
  • Paper and painters tape

How to

  • Water down the paint and pour into deep bowls.
  • Tape the paper on the slide.
  • Let your LOs dip the wheels of the toy cars or textured balls into the paint and slide them down.

Miss A(3.5) & Miss D(2.5) loved this activity. They enjoyed watching the cars drive down the slide. They dipped the ball in paint & rolled it down the slide. Then they drove the cars up and down the slide. Their hands got all messy with paint.After painting, they helped in cleaning –  washed the cars, washed the slide all clean, mixed all the paint together made a big mess and then cleaned the bowls.😀 This activity was a definite hit because they keep asking to do it again!

Posted in Busy Bag Activity, Counting Activities, Fine Motor Activity, Learn Numbers, Math Activity

Number Match Wheel – Preschool Math

Number Match Wheel is a very simple math activity for preschoolers which helps develop number recognition, counting, number order, concentration & fine motor skills.

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What you need

  • Cardstock or cardboard – i used empty cereal box
  • Markers
  • Scissors 
  • Clothespin
  • Permanent Marker

How to

  • Flatten the cereal box and cut out a circle.
  • Divide it into ten sections.
  • Mark dots on each section to represent a number. I did 1 to 10.
  • Write the corresponding numbers on the clothespin.
  • Let your LOs count the dots on each section and match the clothespin to it.

Miss A (3.5 yrs) did it with ease. She counted the first five segments and then understood that it follows numerical order, and then just pinned the numbers without counting the dots. 😜 If you think your kids will do the same, you can jumble the order or use higher sequence. Then, I pointed a segment, she counted the dots on it and matched the clothespin. That way she counted all the segments. Miss D (2.5 yrs) counted the dots upto 3 by herself, but needed help with matching the number on the clothespin.😀

Other things we did

  • Jumbled the clothespin & ordered them in numerical sequence.
  • Spoke about which part of the wheel has the most dots and which one has the least.
  • Spoke about how number 1 is smallest and number 10 is biggest in the sequence 1-10.
Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Sensory Play

Water Beads & Golf Tees – Fine Motor Activity

Who would think about waterbeads & golf tees combination. Odd right! Well someone did and luckily i came across this activity on Pinterest. This is a great activity to develop fine motor skills, concentration, patience & perseverance.

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What you need

  • Water Beads
  • Golf tees
  • Styrofoam block
  • You could find all the items in dollar store.

We did this activity almost 2 months back. A & D pushed the golf tees into the styrofoam anywhere they wanted – went on for a while – poking it in and taking it out. This was the first time they are handling golf tees & styrofoam and so they were quite excited about it. This was a great fine motor exercise for the little fingers.

Then i helped them put the golf tees in straight lines. Gave them water beads and asked to place it on the golf tees. They both did it with so much concentration. Everytime you touch the already placed water bead, few others fell down along with it – like dominoes. They got a little frustrated but kept doing it all over. They just didn’t give up until A got 90% of the beads to stay & D one straight row.

Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Learning Opposites, Montessori, Sensory Play, Vocabulary - Toddler & Preschool

DIY Sound Boxes – Montessori Inspired

Sound Boxes are amazingly fun and very simple to make. It helps your LOs hone their auditory senses, practicing sound discrimination and improving vocabulary skills.

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What you need

  • Empty containers – i used drinkable yogurt bottles.
  • Pantry items
  • Hot glue (optional)

How to

  • I picked five bottles each with different color caps – red & blue.
  • Fill the bottles with pantry items. I used rice, black eyed peas, dry penne pasta, cotton buds and dry sago.
  • Fill each item in one red and one blue bottle almost 3/4th of it.
  • If you don’t want kids to open the bottle, you can choose to hot glue the caps. However i skipped it – read on you’ll see why.
  • Your sound boxes are now ready to use.

This activity was very interesting for Miss A(3.5 yrs). She thoroughly enjoyed it. Heres what we did.

1 – Contrasting Sounds

  • I shook the ‘loudest’ box near each ear – then A repeated the same. The dry pasta was the loudest.
  • I shook the ‘softest’ box near each ear – then A repeated the same. The cotton buds box was the softest.
  • We discussed about loud & soft sounds.

2 – Matching Sounds

I let A do this all by herself.

  • She picked one red box, shook it and observed the sound. 
  • Then shook each blue box, until the pair was found. Every time she said, same or different.
  • Once the pair was found, she put it aside. Repeated until all the boxes are matched.
  • After all the boxes had been matched, A checked them again.
  • Once she confirmed all are matched, i let her open each bottle to see which item made that sound – also checking if the boxes are matched perfectly.
  • She spoke about each item, what it was, how it felt and then closed the box. – this is why i didn’t hot glue the caps.

3 – Grading Sounds

  • I took red boxes, shook them to find the ‘loudest’, put it aside. A shook it to listen.
  • I shook the rest to find ‘next loudest’ and put it next to the ‘loudest’. A shook them & compared the sounds.
  • We continued grading until ‘softest’. 
  • Grading loudest to softest – Pasta, Peas, Sago, Rice, Cotton buds. Although rice & sago, pasta & peas were too close. Just depends how much you fill in the box.
  • Then, A repeated this with the blue boxes, using red as a key.

Miss D(2.5 yrs) loved to shake the box and hear the sound it made. She enjoyed opening the box, pouring the contents out then filling it in the bottle & closing it. That was a great sensory fine motor activity for her.

          Posted in Busy Bag Activity, Counting Activities, Fine Motor Activity, Learn Numbers, Math Activity

          Find the Missing Number – Fine Motor Math Activity

          Find the Missing Number activity is easy to set up and can be used to practice any number sequence depending on your kids ability. It helps develop number recognition & counting from a random place. You could also use this method to practice skip counting. Came across this activity on facebook (it was a video in fb ads – don’t remember which page) and tried it out.

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          What you need 

          • Clothespin
          • Craftstick
          • Marker

          How to

          • Write the number sequence on the craftstick – underline or leave blank space to indicate the missing number.
          • Write the missing number on the clothespin.

          Miss A(3.5 yrs) first thought she had to match the numbers on the clothespin to craftstick. Then, I showed her how to pick one craftstick at a time, go through the number sequence, check what number is not there and pick the matching clothespin to clip in the blanks. I did one with her, and she finished the rest in a breeze. She did repeat it once upon request (so mummy could take pictures 😉). We should start working on higher number sequence.

          Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Sensory Play

          Marble Race with Water Beads

          Water beads has become our recent favourite. My LOs enjoy playing with their Marble Race toy. They love to see how the marbles race their way down. This time when they wanted to play with it, i gave them water beads instead of the marbles – I must say this was a hit!

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          We set up the marble race on a storage bin – its easy to hold the water beads. A & D set their own tracks. It was very simple and small – perfect for the water beads to race down easily. Pinching the waterbeads one at a time and dropping them was a great fine motor practice. Although they loved to dump all the water beads down the ramp and enjoyed watching it roll and pile up at the bottom.

          Have you played with water beads yet? Check out how we used them in sensory play & learning activities here.

          Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Learning Opposites, Montessori, Sensory Play, Vocabulary - Toddler & Preschool

          DIY Texture Balloons – Montessori Inspired

          Texture Balloons is a fun tactile sensory activity for toddlers & preschoolers. These are very easy to make and a great way to work on their vocabulary – language development. This texture matching activity is perfect to explain the sense of touch.

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          How to

          • Use a funnel to fill the balloon with any random items(pantry items works best) and tie them close. 
          • Fillers we used – Rice, Sugar, Black eyed peas & Water beads.
          • We used orange and gold balloons. Filled each item in one orange and one gold. 
          • Let the kids touch & feel the balloons to match the pairs. 

          Miss A(3.5yrs) squeezed one orange balloon and then squeezed all the gold balloons to find which matches the orange balloon. Once she found the match she put them side by side. She repeated this until she matched all the pairs. We then spoke about how the balloons felt – soft or hard, bumpy, squishy, crunchy, etc. Each time she felt two balloons she would say if they are same or different. She matched all the balloons perfectly.

          Miss D(2yrs) loved to squeeze all the balloons. She just liked to feel the different textures and talk about how they feel. We dint try to match the balloons.We then discussed about the sense of touch – how we use our hands to touch and feel things – one of our five senses.

          The water beads balloons were my LOs favourite pick. They simply loved squeezing it. Everytime they squeezed it, the water beads popped out. It was so irresistible, i had to try. We all loved squeezing & squishing the beads. It felt so therapeutic- much like a stress reliever.

          Note: If you dont use good quality balloons there are chances, the balloons might tear when you do this activity – the party balloons from walmart seemed to work fine. With a lot of squeezing and throwing, our balloons are still in good shape. We will be adding more textures to this activity.