The Adventure Starts Here: Practicing our Shapes

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Practicing our Shapes

Since Noah started school this September, I haven't been doing as much play-based learning with him.  Don't get me wrong, we play with a lot of educational toys where he is naturally learning.  We do crafts, puzzles, and read books (as well as play with trucks and trains) on a daily/weekly basis.  But since he started school, I haven't chosen a specific topic to focus on.  While I know he's learning a lot at school and have already seen evidence of that, I still want to practice a few things with him at home.  There are a few things I think Noah could improve on... his shapes, letters, and his numbers (he can count really well, but could work on identifying the numbers by sight).  I decided to start with shapes!


I am a strong believer that kids learn through play!  As Mr. Rodgers says, "Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.".  So I started thinking about our current "toys" and how Noah could have some fun while working on our shapes.  Funny thing is, I ended up finding most of what I needed from our "baby toys" bin.  Noah is actually really good at matching shapes and identifying them when I ask "which one is a circle?".  The part I wanted to work on was him naming the shapes himself when I pointed to one.  So while he would play with the following toys, I would constantly be picking up one of the shape pieces and asking him "what is this called".  I was impressed to see that he correctly (and quickly) identify and verbalize all of the shapes from the puzzle except for square and diamond.  I swear he didn't know all of them before he started school... so I guess they are practicing shapes at school too!


Noah has always been a fan of puzzles.  We had quite a few of these "chunky puzzles" when he was younger.  Once he became a pro with them, we moved them to the basement and got him some real jigsaw puzzles instead.  But since we were working on shapes, I brought this one upstairs, and Noah loved playing with it.  He confirmed to me that he definitely has outgrown this type of puzzle, but it was great to work on shapes and colors!  Noah is a pro with his colors, but I figure it can never hurt!


I think most kids have this shape sorter, or something similar, and while Noah had trouble matching the shapes when he was an infant, he's a pro with it now.  Once again, the point of this was not to see if he could match the shapes, but more to facilitate talking about the shapes.  I find that repetition is the best way to learn new words!  


Finally, we worked on our shapes while doing Noah's favorite activity... play-doh!  This was actually the only "toy" we didn't already own.  We have plenty of play-doh, but I found this set on Amazon, that in addition to having plenty of shape cutters had lots of other accessories as well... I think we will get a lot of use out of it.  After making our rocket ship craft, Noah all on his own, saw that the rectangle, square, and triangle could make a rocket ship!  So we decided to make a big and small rocket ship, a Noah and Daddy astronaut, and Mommy who stayed on the ground ;)  We also made a moon and stars, and Noah said the hearts were clouds.  It was a lot of fun and I loved seeing Noah come up with all these creative ideas, even if I did have to help execute a few of them :)


I'm linking up with Amanda for their Teaching Together Blog Hop!


10 comments:

  1. Great ideas!! Looks like so much fun and I totally agree with learning through play!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love this!!! I find myself doing less "learning" at home since Cam's in preschool, too, but I guess he is learning through whatever he's doing. We are working on numbers and letters now....they are tricky!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Play is the best teacher! Your activities are always so amazing. Noah's heart clouds made me smile :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Love this! We haven't done Play-doh in a while - thanks for the reminder. I need to break that out again and do some fun things with Mac sometime soon.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Loving this idea! Lily, like Noah, can count and knows her ABC's but visual recognition isn't quite where I would like it to be. Sometimes you just have to get back to basics!

    ReplyDelete
  6. This is so great. I am all about learning through play. I love trying to sneak it little learning moments while Abigail is just happily playing away. Best of both things!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Play-doh seems like the perfect tool to learn shapes with! You can make different ones over and over! ps- I think we have the same TV stand! Hemnes??

    ReplyDelete
  8. Seriously such a good idea! I love being able to teach Mason something while he thinks he's just playing :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. Connor loves play-doh and there is so much you can do with it!

    ReplyDelete

 
Blogging tips