Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Toddler Trays 7: Pattern Blocks, Counting Cans, Rainbow, Bean Bag Toss, Picnic Play-Doh, etc.

If you want to know a little more about Toddler Trays and why I started doing them with my son you can read more here: Toddler Trays: The What's, Why's, and Where's.

(my son was 2 years and 7 months old when he completed all or these activities)

  1. Mickey Mouse and Cars Foam Puzzle: These came from the Dollar Tree and have been great for B's fine motor skills and counting in order.  Every piece will fit together (it is not a self correcting puzzle) and each piece has a number from 1 to 9, so it requires some thinking to put them together in order.  
  2. Melissa and Doug Pattern Blocks and Boards: I actually found these at Lion Hearted Toys (if you live in the Tampa Bay area be sure to visit - they excellent toys at a very reasonable price) for less than $5.  The P.T. in me loves pattern blocks (although it is more O.T. related).  They are great for logic, spatial reasoning, shape recognition, pattern making, and fine motor skills.  
  3. Learning Resources 1 to 10 Counting Cans:  We use these for counting, stacking, making soup, etc.  There are 10 cans and each can contains the number of food items printed on the front of the can (ie. 6 mushrooms, 9 beans, 1 tomato, etc.)
  4. Wall Coloring: Occasionally, I tape paper to the wall allowing B to draw and color.  This teaches a child to apply pressure through their upper extremity without the assistance of gravity which engages muscles differently than when they write or coloring with paper on a table or the ground. 

  1.  Water Bead Cooking:  I have talked about water beads before and how they are excellent for sensory play.  We use them in a variety of ways, but in the photo above B is using them for pretend cooking with his pots, pans, and utensils.
  2. Alphabet Blocks:  What to do with alphabet blocks? Line them up in ABC order.  Build a pyramid in ABC order.  Make a tower and knock it over. Build simple words.  Place them in a container, draw one out and name an object that begins with that letter and the list goes on.
  3. Number Bean Bag Toss:  I printed some Sesame Street numbers and arranged them in a semi-circle.  I would call out a number and he would toss a bean bag to that number.
  4. Felt Rainbow:  This was part of our busy bag swap (tutorial can be found by clicking link).  He built the a rainbow while I read What Makes A Rainbow?

  1. Play-Doh Picnic: You don't have to have the molds to have a picnic, just make your own play-doh pretend food.  B loved setting up a picnic with his stuffed friends and plastic plates.  We made them all sorts of treats and had quite the conversation going on.

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You can view more Toddler Tray ideas here:


Amanda said...

You are such a creative mommy! I want to get some of those water beads and maybe the counting cans, too. We just got a really nice Dollar Tree that is next to Emily's ballet class.

Renee Cook said...

Just found your blog via pinterest stumbling. :) yay! i have a 15 1/2 month old - due in 6 weeks with my second. whew. really hoping to put together some activities that we can do together and/or she can do on her own when my time is more divided and we get out less. Thanks for all the ideas. Question - are the bins annoying to store/clean up? I like that size bin, but i'm wondering if a plastic shoe box ($1 at walmart) would be easier for cleanup and storage? or do you use other containers for storage and then dump stuff into the white bins? thanks!