Friday, June 24, 2011

Blocks

June 26-July 2: Blocks

Book Suggestions:
Block City by Robert Louis Stevenson
Block Play by Sharon MacDonald
Pooh Blocks by RH Disney

Activities:

Counting Blocks:
Materials: blocks
Description: Blocks are great to use to help your little one practice counting. Line the blocks in a row, stack them on top of each other, or scatter them on the floor for your toddler to count. Show your child how to point to each block as they count. Many blocks come with numbers already written on them. Line them up in number order and count while you point to each number. If your blocks do not have numbers on them, you could write your own with a marker.
Skills Targeted: counting, number recognition, motor skill development

Stacking Blocks:
Materials: blocks
Description: Stacking blocks is a great way to develop your child's motor skills. See how many they can stack on top of each other before the blocks tumble over.
Skills Targeted: motor skill development

Sorting Blocks:
Materials: blocks
Description: Blocks are also great for sorting. You and your child can sort the blocks by color, number, or letter, depending on what type of blocks you have.
Skills Targeted: sorting, develop math concepts

Squares:
Materials: blocks, crayons, construction paper, scissors, glue
Description: Show your child a block and ask them to identify what shape it is. See if your little one can find other squares around your house. Cut out several different size and colored squares from construction paper. Allow your child to glue them to a piece of paper. As they are doing this, talk about their color and shape. Count the sides of each square with your child. You and your little one can also count all the squares once they are glued to the paper.
Skills Targeted: shape recognition, recognize a square, motor skill development, counting

Decorate your own blocks:
Materials: plain wooden block, markers, paint, stickers, glitter, sequences etc.
Description: You can find plain wooden blocks at your local craft store (Michaels, Joannes, A.C. Moore etc). Provide a variety of art supplies for your little one to decorate a block. They could draw with markers or paint their blocks. They can also put on stickers, glitter, ribbon etc. They will enjoy adding their original blocks to their toys.
Skills Targeted: enhance creativity and imagination, motor skill development

Name:
Materials: plain wooden blocks, markers
Description: You can write your little ones name using blocks. Using a maker, write one letter on each block. Show your little one their name. You could rearrange the blocks and help your child put the letters back in order to spell their name. See if your little one can name the letters in their name.
Skills Targeted: letter recognition, recognize their name

Block Toss:
Materials: cardboard box, paint or markers (optional), blocks, knife or scissors
Description: Find a cardboard box with a lid. Cut a hole in the top of the box. You and your toddler could paint or draw on the box to make it look like a block if you would like. Give your little one a basket full of blocks and have them through the blocks into the hole in the box. Count the blocks that they make in the hole. (Since blocks are hard, you may want to play this game outside, so that nothing accidentally gets broken!)
Skills Targeted: motor skill development, encourage your toddler to move, counting
Block Hop Scotch:
Materials: sidewalk chalk, blocks
Description: Draw a hopscotch design using sidewalk chalk outside. Write a number in each block. Show your little one how to gently toss a block at the hopscotch drawing. Show them how to jump to their block and pick it up. Let your little one try to do it on their own. See if they can name the number that their block lands in. If your little one is not ready to play the actual game of hopscotch, simply draw some squares on the sidewalk with chalk and have your little toss a block at it. They will have fun running or trying to jump to get their block. This will also give them an idea of hopscotch for when they are a little older!
Skills Targeted: number recognition, motor skill development, encourage your toddler to move, follow directions

Block Prints:
Materials: blocks, paint, paper
Description: Your little one can make block prints by simply dipping one side of a block into paint. (Or they could use a paint brush and paint one side of the block) Then they can stamp it onto a piece of paper. Talk about what shapes the stamps make on paper (square). Count the squares when your toddler is finished.
Skills Targeted: counting, motor skill development, shape recognition

Block Hunt:
Materials: blocks, a basket or bag
Description: Hide blocks around a room in your house, or outdoors. Have your toddler go on a block hunt! As they find the blocks, have them put them in a basket or bag. When they are finished, dump out all the blocks and count them with your little one. Talk about the shape of the blocks with your toddler.
Skills Targeted: shape recognition, counting, motor skill development


Songs and Fingerplays:

I love to play with blocks:
(sung to the tune of All Around the Mulberry Bush)

I love to play with blocks
They're so fun to me.
I love to play with blocks.
Count them, 1, 2, 3.

I love to play with blocks.
I stack them up so high.
I love to play with blocks.
They can touch the sky.

I love to play with blocks.
Red, green and blue.
I love to play with blocks.
How about you?

I have a little Block:
(sung to the tune of Mary Had a Little Lamb)

I have a little block,
little block, little.
I have a little block
it is square.

I like to stack my blocks my so high,
blocks so high, blocks so high.
I like to stack my blocks so high.
Until they touch the sky.

I can count my blocks you see,
blocks you see, block you see.
I can count my blocks you see.
1...2....3!

5 Little Blocks:

5 little blocks stacked up on the floor.
One fell off then there were 4.

4 little blocks stacked up next to me.
One fell off, then there were 3.

3 little blocks stacked up next to you.
One fell off then there were 2.

2 little blocks stacked up, what fun.
Another fell off, then there was 1.

1 little block left by itself.
I picked it up and put it on the shelf.

Online Fun:

Hip to be Square:Blocks are square! Check out this classic Sesame Street video.

Grover counts blocks:
Watch this Sesame Street video with your little one of Grover counting blocks.

Block Model of the City:Watch this video at Sesame Street.

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