Introducing toddlers to the basic “building blocks” of objects is what TuTiTu’s videos are all about. But with all due respect to educational videos for kids, and we obviously have a lot of respect for those, sometimes kids just need to move around and play a little, right?
That’s why this week we have a special treat for our little fans and their parents – a fun shapes and colors learning game! Teach toddlers the names of shapes and colors, help them develop cognitive and language skills, AND practice some gross-motor skills along the way. Not to mention – this should be a lot of fun!
On Your Mark…
Start by cutting out large versions of different shapes from colorful thick papers. Make a few copies of every shape, each in a different color (e.g. red, blue and yellow squares). Choose the number and complexity of shapes that is appropriate for your child’s developmental stage.
If you’re planning to play with a group of kids, you’ll want to also make “shape cards” and “color cards”. These are smaller versions of the large shapes you just created, but with shapes and colors represented separately. On each “shape card” you, or the child, draw one of the shapes you’re using, and on each “color card” you can write or paint in one of the colors you’ve included in the big shapes.
Write the name of each shape on it. Place the shapes on the floor, with some distance between them. Make sure the name of the shape is facing up, so kids can see it while they play. Use tape to secure the shapes in place.
For One Player:
Get excited! Call out the name of a shape. Have the kid run to the relevant shape and jump or stomp on it. You can start with only shapes (“Find a triangle!”), progress to only colors (“blue shape!”), and graduate with shape/color combinations (“blue triangle!”).
For Group Play:
Get excited! Invite each kid in his/her turn to choose a card from the smaller “shape cards” you prepared. Let the child announce to the group which shape is on the card. Have the other kids run to find a place to stand on a relevant shape.
Watching animated videos for kids with your toddler? Use them to teach shapes and colors! Learning occurs when your toddler is watching any video, not just when you watch color songs for kids or intentionally instructional videos. Challenge the toddler to identify colors and shapes on the screen, link what you’ve seen in the virtual domain to objects the toddler can touch and explore, and learn while having fun!
Next, let the child choose a “color card”. Whoever is standing on the correct shape in the correct color – wins the round. Invite the “winner” to pick and announce the next cards.
* If you’re worried about the kids becoming too competitive, have them each find a shape to stand on BEFORE you select the cards. The challenge then becomes for the kids to identify whether or not they are the ones standing on the winning shape.
Sivan, one of the Tu-Ti-Team’s animators, tried out this game with her nephews, 3.5 and 1.5 years old. “They loved it”,she said “they wanted to keep playing more and more.”
What are YOUR favorite shapes-learning activities? Let us know!