27 answers

Lesson Plans for 2 Year Old

I am a stay at home mom and my son just turned 2. He is very bright and has started letter recognition and counting, and is hit or miss with his colors. We do lots of educational activities throughout the week, but I would like to sit down with him at home with some "lessons" in mind. Don't worry, I will not be forcing him to do anything that he is not capable of, like sitting for a full hour of "class" or anything like that. I would just like to expose him to things that they might be doing in a daycare/preschool setting. I want to start working with him more!

Any suggested resources for free lesson plans? I would love to hear about websites that you like or hate. Thanks!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Every minute in a toddler's life can be a teaching moment. Singing songs, playing silly games - they all teach something - fine motor skills, language skills, listening skills, etc.

Just play with him. I know it doesn't "feel" like you're teaching, but you are!

I think mostly what you should try to teach is empathy and the ability to listen and follow diections. That will take him a long way. Just yesterday I got an e-mail from Love and Logic talking about teaching empathy by modeling it!

6 moms found this helpful

Children this age learn by playing. Put together different activities for him. Use tactile stuff to teach - not paper and pencil. Play-doh is good for strengthening his hands. Stringing beads (be right there with him - you can't believe how kids will put them in their ears and nose or mouths) will help him with small finger movements. You can sing and count while you do it and say "Hand me the red one" to help with teaching the colors. Puzzles are SO terrific - they teach spatial awareness. Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends is a greating teaching tool because building the tracks uses the spatial part of the brain. And telling stories about what the trains are doing develops language.

Get his stuffed animals together and let them help him tell a story. Say things like "Bear is going to the store. What will he bring home from the store?" Let him use his imagination.

Don't get into the habit of always doing this stuff WITH him. He needs to do some on his own. If he feels that play is only done with his mom, it will hamper his development.

D.

5 moms found this helpful

I work with 2 year olds at a montessori school. At this age, you really can't plan lessons and stuff like that. They learn through playing. You really shouldn't be going over letters, numbers, colors yet. You can if he is interested, but I wouldn't push it. Even just building blocks, painting, playing with playdough they are learning. Things that help them build up fine motor skills are good. Not so much academics yet.

4 moms found this helpful

More Answers

um....your child is 2. Why not just read books and point out animals, cars, fish? or how about coloring? Or singing songs? Going to the park? Having play dates?
I have a son that was VERY bright as well. At your son's age he was doing the same things, colors, letters....it was amazing! He had a dinosaur book that we read every single day (Dinosaur ABC's. it had a dinosaur name for each letter) and my son knew EVERY SINGLE ONE! He knew the names of all of the construction vehicles too. It was crazy. At 5 he couldn't remember A SINGLE ONE.
Just because your son memorizes things at such a young age doesn't mean that he is going to remember it as he gets older. What your son needs is interaction, play, talking, reading, laughter, and singing. I am sure that you do all of those things! Just continue to do them. Let him be a kid, he is going to be reading, writing, and at school before you know it.
Laura

9 moms found this helpful

It's wonderful that you are involved w/ your toddler !

As a parent educator, I can tell you that I just volunteered to do a consult (a few wks ago) w/ a woman who taught her daughter everything under the sun when she was 2, 3, and 4. She is in Kindergarten now and is bored out her mind. In turn, the Mom said she does not like the teacher. After we talked, the woman assured me that she is not pushing her toddler to " learn" so much because it backfired on her.

In turn, some kids learn alot of "academics" and don't quite soak it all in anyway.

I did read that you will not overdo it...And that is wonderful !!!

Playing, songs, fingerplays, puppets, finger paints, blocks, outdoor play etc... and discipline are a huge part of what should be taking place right now.

If you take the plastic red barn out and play "farm" w/ him for 15 minutes...That is teaching. When you read or look at pictures in a board book/toddler book...That is teaching. When you recite "One, two, buckle my shoe"...Hold up your fingers as you count...That is teaching. Even going to the grocery store and talking about the foods, etc. is a language lesson in itself. Taking him to a 2 yr old playgroup is all about parallel play/ socializing...That is teaching, too.

He should be going to a playground geared for younger kids. I took my kids to the playground alot. Gross motor skills are extremely important, too.

Playdough and Scribbling w/ lg crayons are great, too. Activies like this will build the muscles that will be used for writing... later on.

Discipline means to teach. Teaching him play w/ another child and begin to teach him to take turns is teaching. If he has a tantrum because you say no to an ice cream cone just before lunch...That is teaching him self-control. He will also do best if you have a simple daily routine. Toddlers thrive when they know what is going to take place, of course w/ some flexibilty. Let him sit and play independently, too. He might not want to sit and name all of the colors of the animals. He might want to put them in the barn and close it up. Then, open it back up by himself. This is exploratory play. It's just as good !

For now, don't push letter recognition, colors, or number recognition at
25/26 or so months of age.

6 moms found this helpful

Every minute in a toddler's life can be a teaching moment. Singing songs, playing silly games - they all teach something - fine motor skills, language skills, listening skills, etc.

Just play with him. I know it doesn't "feel" like you're teaching, but you are!

I think mostly what you should try to teach is empathy and the ability to listen and follow diections. That will take him a long way. Just yesterday I got an e-mail from Love and Logic talking about teaching empathy by modeling it!

6 moms found this helpful

Children this age learn by playing. Put together different activities for him. Use tactile stuff to teach - not paper and pencil. Play-doh is good for strengthening his hands. Stringing beads (be right there with him - you can't believe how kids will put them in their ears and nose or mouths) will help him with small finger movements. You can sing and count while you do it and say "Hand me the red one" to help with teaching the colors. Puzzles are SO terrific - they teach spatial awareness. Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends is a greating teaching tool because building the tracks uses the spatial part of the brain. And telling stories about what the trains are doing develops language.

Get his stuffed animals together and let them help him tell a story. Say things like "Bear is going to the store. What will he bring home from the store?" Let him use his imagination.

Don't get into the habit of always doing this stuff WITH him. He needs to do some on his own. If he feels that play is only done with his mom, it will hamper his development.

D.

5 moms found this helpful

Concentrate on LIFE experiences - zoo, park, waking around the neighborhood, going to the store, making crafts, playing games. You can work numbers, letters, etc. into that just by talking about everything. When it is time to do structured learning, in preschool or school, it will happen.

At my son's daycare, they sang songs, did crafts, there was a garden, they listened to stories, etc. Don't "work" with him. That's all he'll be doing when he goes to kindergarten. PLAY with him. Children learn by PLAYING - it's actually their job. We all learn better when we're enjoying it, so just have fun with him, enjoy the world, experience it through his eyes and he'll have enrichment and growth from that.

5 moms found this helpful

I have 5 two year olds in my daycare/school. The word "lessons' hits me the wrong way, but I think I know what you mean. You've gotten a lot of good suggestions so far. It sounds like what you're looking for is a lesson plan for you to follow so that you have a better structure and more ideas to go by...?

Do remember that kids at this age learn best through play. Almost anything you do throughout the day is an opportunity for teaching and learning. Your awareness of what your son doesn't know and talking to him about what you observe are good lessons. Offering new experiences with regard to places, activities and other people and children are good lessons.

Some of the things that we do in a typical day are: (small motor skills), playdoh, puzzles, legos, bristle blocks, wooden blocks, "feeding" Mr Tennis Ball (which is a tennis ball with a cut along the seam, and a face drawn on so when you squeeze it it looks like he's opening his mouth.... then the kids "feed" him with small beads ), coloring with small chalk and crayons (we break them to encourage correct pencil grip for handwriting later). Trace and play in different materials; corn meal, shaving cream, birdseed... scooping and pouring (water, rice, birdseed etc...) Using small tongs to pick up different things and transfer them to another container. Ripping paper.

(Large motor skills) running, jumping climbing, balancing, dancing.

We do have a circle that lasts about 20 minutes. We do LOTS of teaching through songs. All of my kids know their colors, the days of the week, their parent's names, and lots of rhyming songs and finger plays. We also read books, work on letter recognition and sound (through songs).

We go outside every day, whether it's a wagon ride, playing at the park, playing in my backyard, or just a walk in the neighborhood. We talk about the weather, the wind and clouds, the seasons, sun prints, dig in the sand, play in sensory boxes I make, or sensory bottles, parachute play, group games, chase, kick balls, play catch, hunt for (plastic) bugs or other things I hide in the yard. Observe animals and bugs.

We play with musical instruments; some are bought, some we make, dress up, dramatic play where we act out stories or pretend play with dolls or toys. We do lots of art; glueing, painting on a table (using different materials; brushes, feathers, sponges, q-tips, handprints made into elephants, ducks, trees..., foot prints, and easel with brushes using different kinds of paints, finger-painting. "painting the fence" with brushes and water.

Because we have a group of children we also work a lot on sharing, using your words to ask for things or express feeling, labeling feelings...

There are so many fun things to do that don't even seem like lessons or teaching. if you keep that in mind with your interactions with your kiddo, you'll do just fine!!

5 moms found this helpful

Playing is his plan for lessons! You build his vocabulary by talking to him about what he is doing. There isn't anything out there better than reading. There are tons of good books at the library for free. Even when he goes to school, they read for homework. A few abc magnets on the fridge and wha-la you have a a whole plan for his day!

4 moms found this helpful

I work with 2 year olds at a montessori school. At this age, you really can't plan lessons and stuff like that. They learn through playing. You really shouldn't be going over letters, numbers, colors yet. You can if he is interested, but I wouldn't push it. Even just building blocks, painting, playing with playdough they are learning. Things that help them build up fine motor skills are good. Not so much academics yet.

4 moms found this helpful

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