Dry cold cereal is a great tool for teaching kids about shapes. Fill a baggie with several types of cereal and let your toddler sort them out by shape.
Squares: Chex, Quaker Oat Squares
There are more shapes in some sugary cereals (Lucky Charms comes to mind). If you don’t want to buy an entire box, consider buying the little one-serving packs and letting your kids glue the shapes onto paper. Or just eating a small serving for a special treat.
And of course, there are other foods that come in basic shapes. Some crackers are triangle or rectangle shaped. When you start looking around your kitchen, you may find little teaching opportunities everywhere!
We’ve been checking out a different How Do Dinosaurs… book from the library for the past few weeks. The Boy really enjoys the rhythm and rhymes and has taken to reciting some parts. These are short picture books that teach a simple lesson. The dinosaurs learn their colors, count to ten, say good night, eat their food and go to school to name a few.
Younger kids might enjoy the counting and colors books and older kids will like to see the dinosaurs go to school and play with their friends. The silly, rhyming text is accompanied by great illustrations of dinosaurs with human parents. These are fantastic books for older kids who are into dinosaurs too.
I often have bits of left over yarn from various crafting projects. Last week I made several yarn dolls with the scraps. This is a quick, relatively easy, very cheap way to make a toy. Older kids (I’d say ages 8 and up) could probably even make the doll themselves. For younger kids, the outcome is fun to play with. One skein of yarn can make quite a few dolls. The dolls can be used as tie-ons on a birthday gift or as party favors. You can adjust the size of the doll by using a larger piece of cardboard or a larger book around which to loop the yarn.