S.T. asks from Kansas City, KS on January 14, 2010
Creative Learning for Preschool
Ok moms you all have such great ideas I need some help with some creative preschool learning! I'm going to start off with the basics colors, shapes, different animals etc. but I want to make it fun to learn I have a 2 and 3 year old I'll be teaching. Thank you so much
J.K. answers from Mansfield on January 14, 2010
At 2 and 3 if they don't already know the basics... you shouldn't try teaching them "formally". Use life experiences to teach them. Point out things they see everyday and tell them the color and shape. Then after doing this for a while you can start asking them what color or shape it is. There are also great flash cards that you can make up all kinds of games with that just have a shape on it. these shapes come in all kinds of colors and all the common shapes are there. Let them color with the colors they are learning and you can have them color or cut of pictures of shapes...even look through old magazines,etc to find common things that are the shape you are teaching (a mail box is a rectangle,etc).
The animals are pretty easy too. Get a bunch of animal books from the library (there are great color and shapes books as well). Look through them together pointing out the animals, talk about the sounds they make and where they live, what they eat,would they make a good pet?,etc. Take walks outside to see if you can see animals that would live near you and visit the zoo or if you have a nature center around you alot of them offer free programs for preschoolers and parents. You can also take walks and talk about the shapes and colors you see....flowers are really great for that.
There are tons of websites that offer free printables too. Enchanted learning is a good one and crayola has a bunch of stuff too. If they like videogame type toys the fisher price cool school is a great teaching tool and super fun. It teaches more than you mentioned as well so it can grow with them. Just make sure they are having fun and they will be learning it. If they are bored... you have been teaching too long or the wrong way and they are not getting anything out of it. Kids are sponges and they absorb everything they see. It is amazing how much they learn when you think they are just playing or watching TV (like dora and blues clues, mickey clubhouse,etc.
There is a computer game called Mickey Toddler that has mickey mouse and all his friends help the kids learn and play with shapes, colors, numbers, letters, music,etc. My girls loved it! And really picked up alot of knowledge just playing that game.They even learned what plaid was (since that was a color goofy used to paint his house). My youngest knew most of her letters before she was 2 from playing this game and picking up what her sister was learning. I didn't try to teach her anything she just knew it. She is that way now with spelling. She is 4 and asked the other day if you spell over o,v,e,r. Don't ask where that came from... i have no idea! Hope this helps, have fun and the kids will too :)
2 moms found this helpful
A.C. answers from Wichita on January 15, 2010
D.Z. answers from St. Louis on January 15, 2010
Have you checked out the pbskids.com website that is really cute an has interesting things to do on it. My grandson is 4 an he loves the pbskids site, it has counting as well as lots of stuff that are educational as well as fun.
1 mom found this helpful
M.W. answers from Kansas City on January 15, 2010
S., when I did daycare I mostly did searches online to find different free printable activities for my kiddos. There are great preschool sites out there that have ideas for stuff to do with kids. I agree with another poster to use life experiences to teach them. I found if I tried to do more formal sit down teaching with them they got bored real fast. I would incorporate colors with asking the parents to have them wear that color on a particular day and then would serve food and show them things in that color. For numbers I would show them the number and we would count out snacks in that number, I would use pretzel sticks or mini marshmellows or crackers, that type of thing. playhousedisney.com has lots of great ideas for activities as does nickjr.com. I apologize I can't remember what sites I found best to get ideas and printables on as it's been a while since I've used them and got a new computer that doesn't have the sites saved anymore, but if you do a search for preschool activities you can find lots of stuff out there. Good luck to you!
1 mom found this helpful
B.C. answers from Joplin on January 15, 2010
As long as you are supervising sensory tubs are a lot of fun. These are especially helpful when you are stuck inside during crummy weather. I will fill different sized tubs of water in my kitchen for water play, I let them use different sized measuring cups, spoons, also strainers and funnels you can even ad food coloring if the containers are light colored or clear. I also have a pretty big tub that has a tight lid that has dry beans, when we play with them we lay a big table cloth on the floor and it makes clean up a snap ( heavily supervise, you do not want them choking on a dry bean, my kids are very good about Not putting things in there mouth but not all 2 &3 yr olds are) That also works with dry macaroni which can also be a fun art project since there are so many shapes available, very easy to glue to paper. I find that my kids of that age group are happy to glue anything to paper, be it with white glue or glue stix, they even sell colored glue stix that dry clear.
Besides teaching letters, numbers and colors working on hand/eye coordination is good, I cannot tell you how much they enjoy taking turns with picking up toys with tongs and dropping them in a bucket. If you have access to Parents as teachers they are a delightful resource of age appropriate activities you can do. Best advice I have for anyone who is taking care of multiple children is have a schedule, include a story time, invest in or make your own felt board where you can cut out shapes in felt and if you are really feeling industrious you can cut out simple animal silhouettes to help kids act out stories or just have a "circle time" also even if you have kids who don't nap there should be a quiet time when they can either look at books quietly or keep a stash of quiet table top activities, tangrams, puzzles etc. this is also a great time for older children to do homework or work book activities. Lots of luck, enjoy your little ones!
S.B. answers from Albany on January 16, 2010
I sell sets of finger puppets that are hand made in Bolivia--Each bag has 8 animal puppets inside. there is a scene painted on the front of the bag and there are snaps sewn into the scene. the puppets also have the same dome snaps...so you can snap the animals into the scene. It is great for story telling and also to use with various storybooks. check out my website to see photos of the six theme sets and the storybook lists.
S.H. answers from St. Louis on January 15, 2010
for my daycare, I use "first-school.ws" It's an excellent online resource for a multitude of learning projects.