Putting holes into paper with a hole-punch is almost as much fun as cutting paper into tiny pieces with the scissors… At least according to A. Both are good for her fine motor skills and coordination. Both have the potential for a huge amount of mess, which is very appealing to her , yet not quite so appealing for me! Using the hole-punch makes less mess as long as she doesn’t open the part where the little punched out circles collect… And we can use it for a simple counting activity.
We used a single hole-punch as it is easier for A to use. I cut up some paper and wrote numbers on each piece, then asked her to punch that amount of holes into the paper. Initially I left the sections together, but quickly realised she would need the sections separated to make it easier to punch the holes around the edges of the paper. So I cut the paper into separate pieces for each number. She really liked doing this activity. She carefully counted each hole to make sure she got the right number on each section of paper.
Once A had finished with the hole-punch, L used it to make lots of holes in a piece of scrap paper, just because it is fun 🙂
A bag of m&ms can be yummy and educational! We bought a bag of m&ms on the weekend, but before the kids scoffed them down, I got them to do some activities with them.
First they sorted them out based on colour. A liked picking up the blue ones best. They put each colour into separate little bowls.
Then they laid each colour out into lines, to visualise which colour was the most and least plentiful. L counted each colour by twos, recorded the amount, and wrote it in tally form. A tried to count some of them too, but got tired after reaching 20 and told me I could do the rest.
Laying the m&ms out.
L’s count of the m&ms.
L added the numbers for each colour together to find out how many m&ms were in the bag.
Making a pattern.
Continuing a pattern.
A made some patterns with the m&ms and placed the next m&m onto the end of some patterns I made. L did some patterns too, and then made a self-portrait in m&ms. Unfortunately she swiped it away before I had a chance to get a photo. It was pretty neat though.
And finally I let them eat some 🙂
A nice simple activity for A to practice her counting involves stickers, one of her favourite things. She loves to use stickers, placing them on paper, tables, chairs, cupboards, toys, the floor and even herself. I’ve had to remove a lot of stickers from places they shouldn’t be, and it’s really hard to get the sticky residue off clothing when it goes through the wash with a sticker attached. None the less, we keep stocked up on stickers because they are fun and both L and A enjoy using them a lot. So on a sheet of paper I divided each side into six equal spaces (folded in three, then in half) and wrote the numbers 1-6 on one side, and 7-12 on the other. Then A placed stickers in each space corresponding to the number written there. She enjoyed placing the stickers, and she carefully counted them as she put them on the paper.
You may also enjoy Starry Stars and Sticker Names.
A proud of her helicopter rescue puzzle.
We love doing puzzles, but we’ve already done all the ones we own multiple times. I had been thinking of getting some new ones, but L’s school has a great range of puzzles that they rotate through the classrooms and the library that we can use, so I’d been putting it off . A and I often spend a couple of mornings each week doing puzzles in the library after we’ve taken L to class. L will sometimes do a puzzle there if we have enough time before class begins, but she isn’t as interested in puzzles as A. We encourage both of them to do puzzles, as they are not only fun, but they are great for hand eye coordination and logic skills.
Last week our neighbour gave us two bags of secondhand puzzles for the kids, so we spent the afternoon sorting through them, and doing them all. There was a mix of wooden board puzzles, large floor puzzles, a counting one, a couple of cube puzzles and some simple jigsaws. I think they enjoyed the floor puzzles best. Most of them were a little easy for L, but she still had fun putting them together with us. It was nice to spend a couple of peaceful hours doing puzzles with the kids and Big L while baby T slept.
A big pile of plastic beads and we were set for an hour of fun! A separated all these beads into different coloured piles. She was particularly excited about the four shades of pink she found. She also liked the fluoro yellow and fluoro green beads, though she called them “blue-ray” colours 🙂
The sorted piles.
Once she had sorted all the colours out we compared the size of each pile. She showed me the biggest piles and the smallest piles. She also counted the number of beads in the smaller piles. We talked about some of the shapes she could see too. Some of the beads were round, some heart shaped, some looked like flowers, and she even found a red butterfly.
We used the beads to practice making patterns. I set out some simple two and three colour patterns and asked A to place the next bead. She liked doing that, and then she made up some of her own patterns with the beads.
Placing the next bead in the pattern.