As a parent, you may often find that teaching small children new concepts can be tricky. Young children don’t have long attention spans for seemingly boring subjects, and they want to be entertained. So how do you use this to your advantage? One solution could be to come up with fun learning activities that your child will see simply as games. Your little one may not even realize you’re trying to teach them something. Below are a few examples of games you can play with your child to help teach them something.
- Hole punch number recognition. This activity will help teach your child about numbers. Gather together some brightly colored pieces of paper of the same size – you can use colored flash card, scraps of construction paper or even paint chips. Write a different number on each piece of paper. Then, mix the pieces up and ask your child to place them in the correct order. Next, let your child use a hole punch to make the correct amount of holes on each piece of paper, corresponding with the number written on it. If your child is a little older, this can also be used for solving basic math problems. Instead of writing a number on each card, write a math problem on each and have your child first solve the problem before moving on to the other activities.
- Name puzzle. This activity helps your child with letter recognition and learning to spell and write his or her own name. To make a simple name puzzle for your child, first wrist your child’s name on a strip of paper. Next, cut the paper in between each letter of your child’s name, using a new design for each cut. For example, you may cut once in a zigzag shape and another in a wiggly line. The result will be pieces of paper that should only fit together to spell out your child’s name. Once you have the paper cut, mix up the pieces and let your child solve the puzzle. If your child is a little older, this can also be used for putting together sentences.
- Color matching. Another fun and easy game for your child is using colorful paper and objects to help teach color recognition. First, start out with several pieces of paper – again, any kind you choose – of different, bright colors. Next, use other objects in colors that match up to the papers – these could be small gift-wrapping bows, bouncy balls, Legos, or really anything you can think of. Next, simply lay out the pieces of colored paper and ask your child to match the objects up to the paper of the same color.
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