Learning Tools

Both girls are learning with a variety of media. Here is a brief list of things they’ve tried.

Art Supplies

  • crayons, used with both plain paper and coloring books/sheets
  • non-toxic fingerpaints, used with brushes, rollers, sponges, etc.
  • stickers
  • non-toxic glue
  • safety scissors
  • watercolor paints
  • chalk (indoor and outdoor)
  • “painting” with water

Counting

S and I made a game to help her practice counting to a particular number, and help her with the concept of x number of items.

Manipulatives

Felt is a great way to teach concepts and keep kids engaged and on-topic. They love to “stick” felt shapes onto a felt- or flannel-covered board. We’ve made some general shapes for them to play with. I’ve also started making ‘specialty’ pieces, such as a gingerbread man and an apple tree, to go along with particular stories we’re reading. The kids like to move the felt shapes into scenes as we’re reading together. I think it really helps them get “into” the story- literally! Felt also comes pre-printed and even pre-cut with farm animals, numbers, letters, and other useful shapes. We haven’t purchased any of those yet, but might consider it if the feltboard becomes more of a feature in our schoolwork.

Update 8/2011: 

I realized this is really old and outdated!  We are still enjoying some of the same art supplies, but we’ve also tried other media such as homemade claydough, oil pastels, acrylic paints, “real” scissors, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, fabric scraps, ribbon, cardboard tubes (i.e. toilet paper), large rolls of paper, 3-D sculpting with boxes and small objects, and more.  We have a large box of oddities that the girls can get into whenever they want to create something.  Right now they are very much into making diaramas out of shoe boxes.

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