Shapes are the first lesson of maths a toddler learns and is a great early learning tool.What better way to make them learn other than play.
“Play is the work of child “Maria Montessori
Here in this post I am going to talk about how I taught my one year old shapes and how the Montessori approach helped in learning it faster and better.
So lets talk about the Montessori three period lesson first which is the basic of starting any learning activity with kids.
This is done by the care giver, showing and naming for e.g. This is a triangle.
This is the step where you start questioning e.g. can you show me the triangle ?
This stage comes when the child starts speaking and this is more of memory where you don’t mention the name e.g. What is this?
Before I start with this three period lesson there is one step that I follow free exploration/play.
Now lets talk about the activities that we did in sink with the three period lesson.
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1.Chunky Shapes Puzzle
By far the most successful way of introducing shapes in our case.This can be introduced when the baby starts sitting upright on his own.A great way to let them explore.
While introducing these puzzles make sure every time they pick a new piece you tell them the name of the piece.
“you picked a circle try matching it ”
2.Big Shapes Buttons
These buttons are perfect for sorting activities.Take few A4 sheets draw the shapes, spread the sheet on the floor and ask the child to put all the circles in the respective sheet.
This activity needs very little assistance from you as all you have to do is prompt them.If the child is putting the wrong shape just tell them “that looks like a square look again is that a square”.
This also introduces another concept of maths which is big and small but that comes later after the chid is two plus lets just see how this activity will help in learning shapes.
The stacking rods are pretty much in the shape itself four for square ,three for triangle and one for circle.Helps the child in identifying the right shape for the right stacker.
4.DIY Foam shapes
Make a DIY sorting shapes activity using the foam.Cut various shapes and let your child use it for various activities.
One of our favourite activity apart from sorting is paying the rhyme “Daddy finger daddy finer where are you ? Here I am Here I am How do you do ? Daddy daddy finger what are you ? I am a circle , A big round circle.And I try telling him about shapes like circle is round, Triangle has three sides etc while singing the rhyme.
5.Matching the Lid of the boxes
I got few boxes in different shapes and N loves matching the lid of the boxes. As they are in different shapes it becomes fun to match them.
6.DIY cardboard shape tree
This activity is from our Christmas activity and N still love doing it.I made a large christmas tree from a cardboard and made it a puzzle.
Check it out
7.Popsicles and shapes matching
Draw few patterns on a sheet using the popsicle sticks and let your toddler make those shapes with popsicles by either placing the popsicles over the sheet or my simply sticking them together.
8.Free Printable resources
Practice is something which makes things perfect and when you wish your child to recall and remember they need to practice but every time coming up with new toys or activities is little difficult and hence internet comes to the rescue . We used various printable from various sites to make our larding shapes task fun. Here are few that we loved the most.
Itsy Bitsy Fun
and from my own site
9.White board and marker
The best way to play the recall game.Draw shapes one by one and ask your toddler what have you drawn.
10.Nature and Surroundings
No learning is complete till the time we apply it to our life and same goes for shapes.We have shapes everywhere and once the child learns to recognise the shapes don’t forget to miss the twinkle in their eyes when they call the moon a crescent.