Welcome to five days of play – toddler and preschooler edition!
Starting on Wednesday 25th of August we are running five days of play, where we give you five different play ideas that you can do at home with your little one! We’ll be posting the activities here and also sending them by email.
please add us to your safe senders list so that you receive the emails in your inbox – firstname.lastname@example.org!
Join our Facebook group
You are really welcome to join our new toddler and preschooler play ideas Facebook group for 5 days of play. In there we’ll be sharing information, answering questions and arranging a little play along session too
Playing with play dough is amazing for our little ones, it gives them a texture that is slightly resistant that helps them with hand function and the strength that we need for fine motor skills and preparing for mark making, drawing and writing.
We have included our video where Lynn shares five play dough activities that you can do with your little one at home, some play dough mat printables and our favourite play dough recipe that you can make at home (shop bought play dough is available too!)
Our play dough recipe
Play dough mat printable
Click the ladybird below to download our play dough mat printable which can help give structure to activities for our toddlers.
Day two - the great outdoors
Today is all about getting outside to play and collecting things that we can use in our activities. Lorna has recorded a video for you with three play suggestions from the great outdoors!
Day three - texture tubs
Today we are putting together a texture basket, box, bag and popping in 5 toys that feel and touch different. Bonus points if your little one would need to hold them differently.
Our photos are of texture tubs that we’ve created for lots of little ones to use at once, please pop your five items in a much smaller area! Try not to be tempted to add in lots of toys, we really want our little ones to focus on a small selection of toys helping them practice skills, extend play and build up concentration.
For our toddlers this is great for starting to discover and name toys. You can put things together in themes, around a book is an amazing idea, and pull out toys that relate to the book as you read a story together.
For our preschoolers we can name the toys, feel and touch them through a bag to identify them. We can pop them on a piece of paper and draw round them to do some matching games and we can remove one from the paper as a memory game too asking our little ones to identify the missing item. We can also ask for their help for choosing 5 toys and ask them to describe textures too.
Each area of their brain is used too as they use their frontal lobe for their motor functions, their parietal lobe for their touch and sensory input, occipital lobe for their vision, cerebellum for their co-ordination and temporal for their memory & auditory processing.
So much benefit from one little activity, once you are finished, put them back in their bag, box or basket and repeat it over the coming days, repetition is amazing for brain development!
Day four - fine motor skills
Today our focus is all about our fine motor skills.
Fine motor skills are really important skills for our little ones to continue to practice and work on, their hands are not fully formed as a toddler or preschooler so by circling back to our fine motor skills activities you are really supporting their strength and development. We’ve popped a graphic below which shows you x-rays comparing the hand of a 3 year old and a child who is around six years old, so you can see the incredible physical changes that occur in the structure of their hands.
There are lots of fine skills your little one will be working on including palmer grip, finger isolation and digit strength, static grips and dynamic grips too. We have a printable for you with some fine motor activity suggestions that not only help our motor skills but also our co-ordination and bilateral skills where we work both sides of our bodies and brains together. You can download your copy by clicking on the printable below.
If your little one is keen to be on the move you can incorporate some of these ideas for a mobile little one and it can help to do some movement first which often helps them then attend to a task and concentrate.
Have lots of fun, we’d love to hear how you get on!
Day five - small world play
Today we are sharing with you our play pack on small world play where we give you five ideas around a theme for play with your little one at home.
Small world play is amazing for our little ones, it is where we take situations from life and recreate them on a smaller scale, it is great for our sensory and motor skills, exploring relationships, being creative in our play and for our play schemas too.