Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Indoor Summer Activities

I posted some great indoor summer preschool activities last year and they were so much fun, I decided to do a re-post of them!  Now that my children are 2 and 4 years old, they are at different developmental stages so it's fun to see how they work on the activities now that they are older!

1) Busy Bags! 

My playgroup friends had an idea last year to make 13 busy bags of 1 activity and then pass them out to each other, so we all 13 different bags of fun activities.  If you haven't heard of busy bags, 'google' it and you will see a ton of ideas pop up!  I store all of mine in a special bin, so they know right where they are.

The one I made for our group was a Color Sorter.  I made it from a Pringles can to color sort and also teach fine motor skills.
-All you do is empty out a long Pringles can, then punch holes in the lid.
-I bought some hole-reinforcement stickers and placed over each hole.  Then color with a marker each sticker a different color and put over each hole
-Then purchase some colored pipe cleaners in primary colors
Voila!  Now all you do is have your child pick a color of pipe cleaner, and then match it to the colored hole and push it through.  Then you store the pipe cleaners inside the tube when not in use.
I also covered the can with paper so your child can decorate it.  Awesome activity that you can also take on the road!

Other Busy Bag ideas:
This blog has some cute ones, check out these examples from it:
Color Wheel

Shape sorting. I used 5 plastic cups and stuck a shape (circle, square, triangle, star, heart) onto each cup. Cruz's job is to sort through all the shapes and put them into its correct cup.

This blog also has some great ideas on it (wish I could come up with these on my own!):
Lacing Cards:

2) Letter Fun!  Another way to foster learning letters through play is doing art for each letter. I found this 'Letter of the Week' activity online, but was thinking we could do this a few times a week for the summer.  We are on letter "O" right now and we are hanging them all up in the playroom so they can see their work and learn their letters.

3) Math Ideas!  So from letters onto number learning. This is a fun way to teach your preschooler math ideas!  It looks crazy, but basically you are showing them a flashcard (which they totally should NOT be able to do yet, just a visual tool), and then you show them how to count with the pegs and then to choose the number card above to show what it looks like.  Very Sesame Street basics!

This blog also has a few other math teaching ideas!

And this activity is a great math busy bag idea:

4) Baking and Cooking!  We've been baking and cooking which is a great way to teach following directions, math skills and science too!  Getting out the measuring cups to measure flour, sugar, water, etc. is awesome at showing measurements.  Also using the Tablespoons and teaspoons to show amounts as well.  I go through each recipe part, step by step to show my child how to follow directions, and then watch things like muffins rise in the oven to show science skills. 

So there you have it!  Some great summer fun activities to do indoors, and to make learning fun.  But keep up the imaginative and expressive play.   

Don't feel like you have to have an activity planned every day, just go with the flow and let your child play.  Although I know as a parent you need to get out of the house, sometimes it's nice to stay in all day in your pj's, and just go with the flow and have fun!


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