My favorite Toddler/Preschooler Posts on this blog
Most of these came from discount places like Marshalls, TJMaxx, Tuesday Morning, or Walmart. I do not like paying full price for anything. You may even get lucky and find some things at garage sales.
polished river stones
bead stringing (beads came from Montessori Services)
buttons (great for sorting by color, size or shape or for counting)
Mancala for Kids (okay, we don’t play the game at this point, the kids just play with and sort the colored animals)
3-D Textured feel and find (we use our own hand embroidered bag I got from a garage sale).
Three bear puzzle
Bear sorting (The bear sorting activity was purchased at Walmart around September. We also use the buckets to sort colored pom-poms, buttons,lego bricks, and monopoly hotels)
Sorting erasers (these erasers came from Target in their $1 bin, I bought about 3 packs).
Animal/habitat matching game (another find from Walmart, they also have opposites, and they are wooden)
Geometric Counting Cylinders
Other things we’ve done:
1. Putting things into other things – like poker chips into a coffee can with a slit cut into a lid. Do this with supervision.
2. Count things.
3. Play with blocks: regular blocks, chunky legos, lincoln logs.
4. Get outside and look for bugs, dig in the dirt. Collect pinecones, acorns, leaves.
7. Sensory/texture play – Supervised: play with sand, water, beans/rice and toys, fingerpaints, white shaving cream and food coloring on a tray (or pudding so they can eat it). Draw shapes and letters into the shaving cream or pudding. Make swatches of different textured fabrics.
8. Sort things:
by shape, color, size, blocks vs. vehicles, etc.
9. Visit all the parks around your area. The newer parks have great large motor skill equipment.
10. Listen to kids cds in the car.
11. Play with your child – play dress-up, pirates, superheros, restaurant, store etc.
12. Play games outside like red-light green light or bean bag toss, Simon says.
13. Do felt board stories and fingerplay or stories with puppets.
14. Work on throwing and catching things – balls or bean bags.
Chasing Cheerios has some Toddler Activity Bag ideas which are great ideas to take anywhere.