I made something again. I’m finding that I enjoy making toys for Little Jams. This time, it’s a fine motor activity. This is a larger version of one I found on line, the Montessori one is better for using the pincher. This one, however, I find to be quite versatile.
I found this square platform that already had a hole cut in the center. I was planning to use it for a different project, but the hole was too big and I went with something else. This was actually perrrrfect for this project. I had a precut dowel already that happened to fit in the hole. I prefer natural wood tones, but this platform was more of a painters grade material. Little Jams likes red, so I went with it.
A dab of glue and some Melissa and Doug Lacing Beads later… little hands were getting grabby.I showed Little Jams how to play with this toy, one at a time, and counting as I placed each bead. 1…2…3…4. Then took them off, 1…2…3…4. He did as I showed him and was pleased with himself, even saying “yay!” after his first completion. (We use to say “Yay!” at the end of counting the stairs while going up or down. Even though we don’t rejoice in it anymore, sometimes he still feels it to be appropriate).
Since I have an entire set of these beads, one of the future activities I plan to incorporate with this is patterning. I’ll make pattern cards using the shapes and colors of the beads for him to copy on the dowel. I always love a toy that has multiple uses and “grows” with him.
The Pink Tower is a Montessori activity for 3-3 1/2 year olds that helps the child learn a number of things. Visual discrimination of large to small, comparatives, superlatives, dimensions, refinement of visual-motor coordination, concentration, and is an introduction to mathematics. For more information about the Pink Tower and how it is used, look here: http://www.infomontessori.com/sensorial/visual-sense-pink-tower.htm […]
Little Jams likes to pour when he has the opportunity, so I based todays activity on pouring from one glass to the other. It’s suggested to start with similar glasses, and since the only ones I have to fit that description are tequila shot glasses, I went with those. He wants to pick both glasses up and pour that way, but I’m encouraging him to lift only the one he’s pouring. He spilled twice, I just refilled the glass and we moved on. This is day one of this activity, He’ll get better with time. I may try it again this afternoon, depending on his interest level.
We also worked on some shape recognition, the circle and the star were the subjects. I will build on those this week, showing circles and stars whenever I can. I also showed him the words to start some word recognition. Our final activity was a suggestion from Productive Parenting, http://www.productiveparenting.com. It’s a great site with many activity suggestions. I get an email once a week with a new activity for Little Jams’ age. I took pictures of five objects that he knows and put them in the room. I showed him the picture and he, with a little coaxing, went and found them. Two were in a different room, one of which he found quickly and brought over. He’d lost interest before looking for the final item. I showed him where it was and then he began playing with it. Again, day one of this activity. I’m not expecting too much of him today, but I’ll see if he’s interested again tomorrow.