Monday, March 4, 2019

Our Favorite Pre-K Learning Toys and Activities

Hi friends! Today I'm writing all about a topic that I love to share: our most loved educational toys and activities that are just right for Oskar's age group (4-6). I rounded up our top 9 and how we use each for fun and for learning, and the skills he's developed along the way.

1. Sight Word Flash Cards: My goodness how we use these, almost every single day. We keep these right next to Oskar's chair in his room and practice handfuls of them while reading before bed. They have one word on the front and that same word used in a simple sentence on the back. Oskar's confidence has been growing, and he's been reading the sentences, which is truly amazing to see.

2. Sequencing and Memory Workbook: We do NOT have a color-er in this house, but the next few workbooks have been tremendous hits. This one has to do with pattern recognition--big for kindergarten readiness. Oskar loves any type of puzzle, and this one fits right in that category.

3. Cutting and Pasting Workbook:  This one has you cutting shapes and pasting them with a glue stick, which is great for hand-eye coordination. Scissors seem to keep both of our kiddos the busiest when it has to do with any kind of quiet activity.

4. Addition and Subtraction Workbook: A great workbook to introduce the concept of adding and subtracting. So far, we've only focused on addition, which this workbook makes really easy to understand by including pictures along side of the numbers for counting (example: 3 + 2 would have 3 pictures of a horse on one side and 2 pictures of a horse on the other. The solution is reached by counting all of the horses to reach your "equals" answer.) Oskar has also learned to draw his own dots for counting when we work on problems outside of this book--a great little trick to know.

5. Elephant and Piggie books: Some of our VERY favorite books include this series, which are absolutely perfect for new readers. We read these together most nights, and I have Oskar read all of the words in each sentence that he knows. The amount of words in his wheelhouse is growing, and pretty soon, he'll be reading me the stories on his own.

6. Sequence Letters game: SUCH a fun family game where players sound out the letter on their card and match it to the beginning sound of the picture on the game board. Great for phonetic awareness and letter recognition.

7. Brain Quest Workbook: The holy grail, right here. This book is absolutely FANTASTIC, so much so, that I bought it for several people with kiddos this age for Christmas. Oskar loves working on it, and it has so many amazing sections that really engage him (ABCs, 123s, writing letters and numbers, phonics, vocabulary, shapes and colors, sorting and matching, sequencing, science, mazes, games...the list goes on). I cannot recommend this one enough.

8. Puzzle: 300-1,000 piece puzzles have become one of our favorite things to do as a family, and Oskar jumps right in. We recently finished a 500 piece one of the solar system that took us a good while to put together, and now that it's complete, he's has had me on Google more times than I care to count about which planet is which. Great for cognitive skills, problem solving, and fine motor development.

9. Zingo Sight Words: A great twist on Bingo that uses sight words to match and fill your card. We play this one pretty regularly and the amount of words recognized has been rapidly growing.

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