June 14, 2018

Eight activities to encourage learning with your toddler

Grandmother with two toddlers at Early Learning Community.

Learning starts long before a child straps on a backpack and enters a classroom. At United Way for Southeastern Michigan, we want to help children reach their fullest potential, which is why we offer resources to help parents and caregivers make sure learning starts at day one of their child’s life.

Here are eight easy and fun activities to try tonight.

  1. Take your child to story time at the local library to teach them about sitting in groups and listening. Here’s a list of great local libraries from Metro Detroit Mommy.
  2. Play Follow the Leader with your child. They’ll love to take turns copying you and being the leader, and it teaches them about working together with others.
  3. Help your child identify his or her feelings by asking him or her to draw a picture of their emotions, “I am sad” or “I am happy.”
  4. Play games that involve simple rules, like Mother May I or Red Light, Green Light. These games are fun for your child and also teach them about following directions.
  5. Tell silly jokes with your child, or “What Am I?” riddles. Get started with jokes from Babycenter and encourage their emotional growth with laughter!
  6. Try some arts and crafts with your child using things like paper, glue, empty containers and rubber bands. Crafts encourage building creativity and fine motor skills.
  7. Use stuffed animals to act out an argument, then talk with your child about different ways to come to an agreement. This helps to build their problem solving skills.
  8. Tell your story a child, and ask them to tell a story, too. You’ll be encouraging family conversations and building their communications skills.

Having fun? Head over to BibtoBackpack.org to find more parenting resources and be sure to take the Ages and Stages Questionnaire for personalized resources to help your child learn, grow and prepare for school.