5 simple educational activities for toddlers.

1. Playing Sequence

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Materials:

  • sequence cards (you can buy them or draw them yourself)

This is a fun and simple activity in which all you need is a package of sequence cards. I got mine with 0.50$ from a book sale that our public library hosts every month. You can find these cards at dollar store, Target, etc.

What you need to do is to help your child find connections between the cards and arrange the sequence in the right order.

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2. Sticker Sorting

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Materials:

  • 2 or more sheets of paper
  • different kind of stickers
  • tape to attach the papers on the door (optional)

As simple as it may look, Joellen really enjoyed this activity. Her favorite part was to pull the stickers of the page and place them on the papers.

You can use this activity in order to help your child learn the colors (with papers and stickers according to each color). I chose to make it easier for her because she is still little. We practiced just 2 colors that day: white and pink.

She understood that the princess’ sticker go on the white paper, while the cupcake’s stickers go on the pink paper. I helped her figure this thing out by starting off and fixing a pattern.

 

And, of course, she could’t help not to stick some stickers on her cute little face.

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What did I learn today? activity 1 and 2

Besides learning 2 colors (I know is little but it’s a start), my daughter learned to sort. Sorting is a complex skill in which children can identify similar characteristics in a group of objects. It also helps them with decision making and to analyze data.

 

3. Learning (more) Colors

Materials:

A. Toys your child already has in his/her room

B. Books and cards

C. Water and food colors

 

A. This is how I did it. I took 4 baskets and placed in them blocks or different shapes that are the same color. I set aside some other blocks of different colors that I gave to her. She had to place them one by one in the baskets. We also used this colorful toy that she already had in her room.

 

 

Hint* Encourage your child to repeat after you, as many times as she/he can. Repetition really helps them to learn faster the new words.

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B. You can use any book you have around. Point towards different objects/characters in the book. Again, name the color out loud while you encourage your child to repeat it after you. Also, you can buy books that are designated to help your child learn the colors (duh).

Another alternative: color books (pick around 4 different colors and give them to your child while naming the color one by one)

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With cards

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If your child is still little offer him/her the whole package. At first, just observe how the little one plays with it. For example, I noticed that my little girl likes to take the cards one by one and arrange them on the window pane.

Then, get involved. I decided to give her the cards one by one while I name the color. Again, ask him/her to repeat after you. Joellen did that while she was trying to align the cards at the window.

In this way, it doesn’t feel like you are just asking them to repeat what you do, but they enjoy learning while playing their own little game.

 

C. Because she likes to help me in the kitchen and be involved in everything I do, I gave her different jars filled with clear water. We started by pouring one drop of food coloring in each jar/bowl. She mixed the color well and observed that the clear water turned pink, green, and blue. While doing this, we named the colors one by one, trying to memorize the new words.

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What did I learn today? activity 3

Besides learning some colors (vocabulary), this activity teaches her how to solve problems (by sorting the shapes), identify between different objects that differ in shape, size, and color. She got some cooking skills too (lol).

 

4. Playing with numbers

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Materials:

  • 2 or more A4 white paper
  • plastic links
  • sharpie
  • paper hole punch

 

Cut as many squares according to how many numbers you want to teach your child. Then, make some holes in the middle (up and down as shown in the image).

Let your child connect the squares in the right order by using the little links.

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5. Saving the toys

Materials:

  • animals or any other small toy
  • tape
  • any kind of surface you would like to attach the toys

This activity will keep your child busy and entertained. Trust me, it’s fun and challenging for a toddler to save all the animals/toys by getting the tape pulled up and removing the tape from all the animals. Then, he/she will try to free their little fingers from the sticky tape.

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What did I learn today? activity 4 and 5

Obviously, my little one learned some numbers, to plan and make decisions, and solve problems. She practiced her hand-eye motions (coordination) while working on her vocabulary too.

 

Will you try these fun, simple, and educational activities with your toddler?

Let me know in the comments below!

Reading and drawing space for toddlers. Easy and fun ideas for small spaces.

You know those times when it’s too silent in the house and you wonder what it’s actually happening? What is your little munchkin doing right now? You walk towards the room while dozens of scenarios of what could it be happening are playing in your head…

Is it the dirt from a houseplant? Is it your makeup bag that it’s being inspected throughout fully? What can it be?

I am not saying that my child is perfect (cause I am writing the previous lines from experience), but so many times I was completely wrong. I was so impressed to just see her sitting on her little pink couch (click here to see the couch transformation) and reading.

There were days (oh glorious days!) in which she would spend between 30 and 40 minutes reading. My girl is an 18 months toddler, so when I say “reading” I mean looking at the pictures in the books.

So seeing this happening, I knew that I had to buy more books. And I did it. But when the books became too many I needed a place to store them.

We were having this old piano bench laying in our house with no specific purpose. I immediately thought of ways in which I could use it for my daughter’s room.

This was my little project:

 

You can see how old and bad looking the wood from the piano bench was.

I used some white, nontoxic chalk paint and brushed all over it, even inside. I left unpainted just one side (the part that you first see when you open the piano bench). Then, I used a black, nontoxic chalk paint.

Hint* In order for the chalk board to be smooth and easy to draw on you need to sprinkle some chalk dust on it and then wash the board completely. 

To do that (if you don’t already have some chalk dust), you need a regular piece of chalk and a small knife that will help you scrape the chalk dust.

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After following these steps the chalk board is smooth and ready to be used.

I placed some of the books in the storage space inside the piano bench, alongside with some chalk markers (that she will use to draw, EVERYWHERE).

I recommend using these types of markers (pic. b) because they are very easy to remove from every surface (walls, sheets, toys or anything else that your child will like to transform into a masterpiece, hehe).

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Another important detail were the protection pads (pic. b) that I attached on each corner so she will not hurt her fingers when she tries to open and close the piano bench.

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pic. b

 

Of course the space inside the bench was not enough to store all her books so I ordered online some cloud shelves, like these ones.

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I added some white toddler chairs and voilà! Now she has a reading and drawing space – her own little library. It’s perfect for small spaces and it can be done so fast and easy.

If you don’t have a piano bench you can use a small toddler table/desk, a small coffee table, or even a small drawer that can be attached to the wall.

 

You can even fit 2 chairs if the table is long enough. This is the final result:

 

Make and tell. Intentional living.

Content:

 

  1. Define your purpose and your values.
  2. Make choices that reflect those values.
  3. Start somewhere. Little steps count.
  4. Creative, simple ideas that can make a huge difference.

 

1.

Living intentionally means to live according to your values, having set a purpose for your life.

For me, living intentionally means to glorify God with every one of my actions, my values being set by His Word.

 

2.

To make choices that reflect my set of values is to add practical actions that support my values.

Out of love for God and His creation – human beings and the astonishing nature – I start to examine more deeply my everyday actions and to take little but important steps towards honoring, loving, and protecting these two.

 

3.

I’m a firm believer that every time we try to implement something new in our life we need to start slow and steady. Discouragement is something that hits very hard and fast, so be aware.

Every decision that you take with the purpose of glorifying/obeying the Lord will be attacked.

 

4.

Because I like to let you always with a creative, sustainable idea, that can make a huge impact on our planet, here is something that you can do:

Start by asking yourself this question: what if I reuse an object instead of trashing it?

 

 

Reusing glass bottles

 

What you’ll need:
  • painting brush/sponge (I used a little makeup sponge)
  • acrylic paint

It cannot get simpler that this. So, after you enjoyed your drink in a glass bottle, instead of trashing it, remove all stickers by washing the bottle in hot water.

 

Before

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Then, chose a color of your choice and start painting. I chose bronze because I really like how the tree detail that is on the bottle stands out.

 

After

gold1

 

I read that some people recommend pouring the paint inside the bottle and gently shake the bottle so the paint can spread. (I tried it with acrylic paint and it didn’t work out so well, maybe it will work if you use other type of paint).

Let it dry thoroughly.

 

Final results:

gold

goldheart

 

 

Reuseing initial glass containers from your favorite dessert.

Again, after I ate my dessert from this glass container, instead of trashing it, I decided to wash it and reuse it for one of our favorite sweet treat, this crème brûlée.

 

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You see, it’s all about moving forward! Little actions like these ones can help you implement in a creative way different sustainable techniques that fit your lifestyle.