I’ve been silent for a while because I’ve been trying to Honor the Rhythm of Rest.
Of course it doesn’t mean I wasn’t BUSY in some form. But, I found time to
- Preach at church on Pentecost Sunday (5/27/12)
- Take naps! (There have been some sleep-less nights with very stuffy-headed girls.)
- Plan a set Tot School schedule (future post spoiler)
- Cease blogging instead of worrying about needing to get this or that post up
There is a 10 in 10 Series going on in the Homeschool Blogosphere right now.
I’m not a well-known blogger, so I haven’t officially been asked to participate, but I thought I would throw one in for all of my readers anyway! So, without further ado:
Top 10 Sites to find Great Activities for Toddlers:
(All of the images are linked, as usual.)
I would be remiss if I did not first list the person who actually coined the term “Tot School” to begin with! Carisa at 1+1+1=1 is a wealth of resources and information. She has a main Tot School page where you can find links to absolutely EVERYTHING you need. If you never click on another link on this list, click on this one!
Erica at Confessions of a Homeschooler started Teeny Tiny Tot School when her youngest wouldn’t stay away from the schooling area her older three children were using! The above image links to the post where she describes each of the shown activities. And if you have older toddlers (3 or 4 years old), you may want to get her Letter of the Week curriculum. I did! It’s amazing.
Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now is a Montessori educator/writer, former Montessori teacher and homeschooler. If you’re not familiar, the Montessori method is widely renowned as an effective instructional tool for early childhood development and beyond. The above post links to an explanation on how to help kids stay focused. If you have trouble with that then this is where you should go. Deb’s Pinterest site is also Montessori heaven. So many activities, you’ll be overwhelmed! By the way, you’ll recognize the Montessori theme at Carisa’s site with her Tot Trays. (That actually should be listed in this Top 10 all by itself because it has so many great ideas! Go there now! :D)
This is a one-stop site for parents. I haven’t perused the whole site, but it looks quite useful. The above image has the link to the list for 1-2 year old activities, but most activities span other age ranges, e.g. 2-6 years old. The list is so long that I haven’t been able to look at it all! From Crayon Games to Fingerprint Art to Homemade Bubbles (Jelly Bean will LOVE this one!) to Searching for Worms this is the low-maintenance way to do fun stuff with your kids.
The image is linked to the activities for 1-year-olds, but if you scroll down the end of the post, she has links for ages 2 to 5 as well. What I love about this post is that she’s got everything categorized from Sensory Activities to Baby Toys to other types of play. You can make sure you’re giving your children a more well-rounded experience if you include a little something from each category. Just be sure not to click on her images! You need to find the appropriate links below the images and click on those instead.
Jamie’s post is specifically geared towards activities that promote fine motor skills. It is actually a conglomeration of other posting mommas plus Jamie’s own activities. You might recognize some of the activities or bloggers if I’ve mentioned them here.
In her post, A Preschool Education At Home, FishMama Jessica offers some simple starts for your child’s learning environment. She does not emphasize any educational curriculum, but rather developing your own learning philosophy and creating the proper environment for educational play.
I will unabashedly admit that I have not tried to follow the resources on this site. I just happened upon it too late – way after I’d already collected many items I’m currently using for Tot School. [Once you start researching, you will find that there are just too many resources out there to choose from and it can be extremely overwhelming!] If you want to have a step-by-step instructional plan to follow that cuts down on your time scouring the internet, I highly recommend this site. It’s got lessons from 1-2 years of age each divided by month. There are two weeks per lesson and the subjects span from Literature to Bible to Music to Nature Study. With a suggested Schedule included, how can you go wrong? And if your kids are a bit older, you can always tweak the activities to suit their interest and developmental stage.
Another list of fun activities and crafts to do with your child. From Cling Wrap Painting to Bottles and Lids, you’ll find that most activities require minimal setup and usually with items you already own. The site itself also has information on multiple subjects related to pregnancy, parenting and schooling.
Would it surprise you to find that there are tons of ideas and activities listed on this site? No. But, I want to draw your attention to just one. The above listed blogging mommies no doubt have their own Pinterest sites, as I mentioned in #3 regarding Deb Chitwood. Even I have my own and I’d love for you to follow me on it! I don’t know Lauren Stephens, but I do like her Pinterest Boards. They break down the homeschooling levels for you (pictured above) unlike mine. So, if you need inspiration, start there and then do a search for more Toddler activities… if you dare! :P