Theme for the Week - The Olympics!
The Olympics! While you may or may not be watching the Olympics, you can talk about things that go along with the Olympics - such as the circles in the symbol, the sports they are doing, and about being active. If you'd like to learn more about the mascots for the Games click this link. While the concept of the Olympics might not quite be one your toddler is ready for, you can still show him/her about things that go along with the Olympics. This week, we'll talk about the circle shape in the Olympic symbol, read about skating, sing about the friendship that is a fundamental element at the Game and much more. Here is another page from First School that has all kinds of additional Olympic activities. Have a great week!
Letter of the Week: O - for Olympics. Point out things that start with "O" - orange, orangutan, oval. Show your toddler a picture of both a capital O and a lower case o. Draw an O on paper and let him/her trace over it, or use your child's finger to draw it in the sandbox or dirt. Use bath tub or refrigerator letters to show him/her this letter as well.
Number of the Week: 21 - For the 21st modern Winter Games. When you show your child anything say "21 oranges" (or whatever you are counting). Count to 21. Write the number 21 on paper or show your toddler a flash card. Show your child 21 things at a time and count them - "one, two, three..." - so your child gets used to the pattern. If nothing else, just to hear the number is good for him/her.
Another relevant suggestion from Preschool Education. Might be a little long but you can just talk about skating and the pictures, which are boldly illustrated. If you can't find this at your local library, you can try Amazon.com. Recently, I searched my local library on-line and placed holds on all the books I wanted and in a couple of days, they were ready to pick up. Instead of trying to browse the shelves with a busy toddler, I picked them up, checked them out and was on my way. Here's a link to public libraries in the United States if you'd like to see if your local branch is here.
Snack of the Week: Cheerios - It was a little challenging finding something relevant to the theme this week so we chose Cheerios since they are in the shape of the Olympic "O".
Spanish Words of the Week: The Olympics - las Olimpiadas, skier - el esquiador/la esquiadora, game - el juego, skater - el patinador/la patinadora, hockey - el hockey. Also check out the BBC's Muzzy from Early Advantage for teaching Spanish (or many other languages) to your child. They are fabulous!
Do It Myself: Identify a Circle (from the Olympic Symbol) Show your child the symbol or draw a circle and ask him/her what it is. Tell him/her if he/she doesn't know. If you practice this enough this week, your child should start identifying the shape. Also, teach your toddler how to Jump - like the skiers. You can have a lot of fun jumping up and down to music.
Activity of the Week: Color the Olympic Symbols - Here's an activity that gives you an opportunity to talk about colors and the shape of a circle. Once you finish the coloring project, ask your child which colors are which. The link is just a picture you can print out and then color together with your toddler. If you'd like more to do, you can make a medal for your child, like the ones the athletes receive. Take a piece of yellow paper, cut it into a circle, punch a hole in the circle, thread a ribbon or string through it and tie it so it can hang on around your child's neck. Yoga Pose: Hero Pose - This is a very easy pose. You can talk about how the Olympians are heroes to their respective countries, if you think your child will understand. Thanks to Yoga Journal for this link. PS - Our kids always liked the Yoga Kids series if you'd like more ideas for doing yoga with your toddler. Sign Language Sign of the Week: Olympics, Ski, Skate, Hockey. If your toddler is still learning how to talk, sign language can be a great way for them to communicate. And as they get older, they'll pick up signs faster and it can be more of a fun thing versus a way to communicate. Thanks to Signing Savvy for these signs.
Like we say every week - don't forget to give your toddler a hug and say "I love you" as many times a day as you can think of! You can never give them enough love. Talk to them, even though they may not talk back and read to them everyday - even if it's the cereal box at breakfast. Enjoy!