We have talked about block play as a wonderful way to learn new things numerous times, and this week we thought it would be great to share some activity ideas how to actually do it. Some of these you have probably already tried, some may be new for you - anyhow, just let the imagination flow and have fun with blocks and your kids! It is all that matters! Learning new things will come just as a side effect (a really nice one, right?)
1. How many blocks does your tower have? Try building one as high as you can and count how many BIG and GIANT blocks did you use. You can even give the tower a name and imagine, where in the World it could be located. If you want to introduce the competitive spirit - organize a little contest and find out who of you will manage to keep it balanced the longest!
2. Play an addition or subtraction game.Depending on the age of the child, you can count the blocks she/he is giving to you or do the opposite - you give and he/she counts. After giving him/her e.g. 10 blocks, ask to give 3 back and count how many left. Do it in a fun and joyful manner and the child will get excited easily. For toddlers you can introduce also speed, e.g. how many blocks can you give me in one minute? When they try to be as quick as possible, they usually break at one moment and just start laughing - embrace these joyful moments, hug, praise him/her and then switch to some more dynamic activity with e.g. running or movements.
3. Use blocks as musical instruments.Show your child that with one or two blocks you can make different sounds. You can bang them together, scratch them, play as drums, put in the blocks some objects that make sound when shaking, and etc.
4. Train spelling with alphabet blocks.Cardboard blocks are very diverse - you can also write on them! If you child is learning to spell, train or test him/her during playtime by writing some letters on the blocks and ask how many words he/she can make out of these blocks. Can you make a sentence?
5. If you have both giant and big building blocks, make a game of comparisons. Which is bigger? Are they anyhow different? Draw something on them and make the difference even more significant, so that your kid has more details and things to describe and talk about.
6. Toss the blocks - who will throw them further?Of course, be gentle and pretend to be a little bit weaker, so that your kid can enjoy the feeling of winning time to time. But you probably already know this, right? :)
7. Blueprints and pattern recreation – build something and ask your child to re-create the same object or the other way around - you can try repeating your kid! This will diversify the block play and will be a good contrast after letting you kid to build freely. Sticking to patterns is a useful skill to master.
You have some other activities in mind? Is any of these popular at your home already? Tell us in comments! :)