Using Your Toddler’s Interest As Learning Activities

Firetrucks, ambulances, garbage trucks, tractors, helicopters, airplanes, ice-cream trucks, motorcycles, buses, cars, trucks, diggers. You get the picture right? Vehicles are what “A” into at the moment and tigers. I really don’t know why he so attached to his toy tiger, but he wants it all the time, ask for it to sleep, when he wakes during the night, when he wakes in the morning. Toddlers do get attached to a specific object or objects and well, his is the tiger. Outside of this tiger though he is into vehicles and gets excited about them. So I’ve been coming up with activities that include them when we do structured learning. (P.S play is learning, children learn through play).

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Some activities include:

Crafts/Art: Dependent on the materials we have at home, I would either draw a vehicle and let him colour/paint it. If we have craft sticks (and glue), we will create little miniature vehicles. One we’ve completed so far with the craft sticks is the tractor.

Sound: This can be incorporated at anytime whether through structured learning or just normal conversation. For this activity we usually go through quite a lot as he would start calling vehicles for his dad or I to make the sound of that particular vehicle. The ones he can get done, he would join in on doing and the others he would try until eventually he gets it done.

Colours: Some of these vehicles he has as toys, so we would go through what colours each of them has. We also look at some in books or on the phone. I asked him a few days ago what his favourite colour was and his response “red, like firetruck.” My heart melted with joy, because my favourite colour is also red. Even though this colour may be short-lived and he’ll probably tell me brown the next time I ask. This activity has also helped him associate colours when he colouring or painting, especially red. Whenever he has a red crayon or marker he’ll say “like the firetruck.”

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Size & Counting: In this area, for his vehicle toys some of them have big wheels and small wheels, so we will identify between big and small and count how many big wheels and small wheels each vehicle has. We will also count how many wheels each of them have altogether.

Phonics: For each vehicle, we do phonics. His favs right now in this area are van, truck, car and bus.

Songs: This cannot be left out, whether songs that already exist or songs that I make up on the fly and then don’t remember the next time he request them. Songs are always a a hit.

Block Building: This only comes because two of his toys came as a block set, however this can also be done with Lego or Mega blocks.

A’s interests at the moment are vehicles. No matter your little one’s interest, you can corporate something from each of the categories above and more for structured learning activities. Also Pinterest is full of ideas that you can do.

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