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Before I had Baby G, I was working part time leading courses for teachers and doing private tuition.  When at home with J, I did lots of creative play just as I do now.  I always wanted to write a blog but just didn’t have any time as I tutored in the evenings and worked in the day and on my days off we just played ALL day! I did take some photographs occasionally and this post is a small collection of some of the things I did with J when he was two. Hope you enjoy! They are more than suitable for J now too but he began doing these things aged two…

Activity 1: Fine Motor Play Dough

You will need:

  • Play dough
  • Empty egg box
  • Ice-cube tray

Simply providing J with play dough, an egg box and ice-cube tray would entertain my boy for ages!  This is fantastic for his motor skills and very therapeutic for me too! I love a bit of play dough play.

Fine motor play dough

As we played, we would talk about size, shape and numbers of what we had made! Talk is such a good thing to do and should never be underestimated!

Fine motor play dough.jpg2

Activity 2: Thread the Spaghetti

You will need:

  • Fluffy pipe cleaners
  • Colander

J still very much loves this activity now and is a must for developing fine motor skills and a good pincer grip.  He looks so young in this picture!! (Sob!)

Fine motor threading.jpg2

Activity 3: Goldilocks Story Box

You will need:

  • The Goldilocks story book
  • Empty box with lid
  • 4 wooden spoons
  • Felt
  • Wool
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Googly eyes
  • Permanent marker
  • Sugar paper
  • Boxes for beds
  • Different size bowls (Lids)

Activities that encourage discussion, role play, story telling and using story language is SO important! A story in a box is a favourite activity of ours and this is one of the first ones we made together.

Goldilocks story Box.jpg2

The lid often forms our ‘front cover’ and J always does the drawing and helps make every part of the box!

Goldilocks story Box.jpg3

Inside the box is the scene so that J can role play the story.  In this particular box the spoons form each of the characters! Unfortunately, I haven’t got any more photo’s yet but I will get it out for J to play with next week and update the post!

Goldilocks story Box.jpg4

Activity 4: Play Dough Nursery Rhymes

You will need:

  • Play dough
  • Sticks

As mentioned in the post Nursery Rhyme Sack, nursery rhymes are a vital and fundamental part of Early Literacy and we have been playing with Nursery Rhymes for a long time, which is why J knows them so well.  We would make the play dough characters together and J would role play and recite the rhyme! You can see a video of him doing this aged 2 years and 4 months! I can’t believe how much clearer his speech is now and it was great then! It’s amazing how much they develop in a short period.

Nursery Rhyme Play dough

Activity 5: Post Man Maths

You will need:

  • Play dough
  • Empty egg box
  • Ice-cube tray

J went through a real love of Postman Pat, so when he was learning recognition of numbers 1-10, I made a postman game. He still plays with this game now as I made it to last! Cleverly, even if I do say so myself Winking smile, I used velcro to put the numbers on, so now J uses this game for higher numbers and sounds! Eventually he will use it for key words too! I LOVE this game; it’s one of my favourites! To make it, I bought an A3 thick piece of card board from the craft shop and sliced thin ‘letters boxes’ in the card.  Above each letter box I put a Velcro dot.  Next, I made some number cards and put Velcro on them. I placed them randomly on the board and whenever J played it, I would move them around.

Post man Maths

Finally, I got some envelopes and wrote a number on the front. J would then have to post the letters in the corresponding letter box! He ADORES this game; I sometimes time him and make him do it really fast before it starts to rain or snow and this gets him uber excited!

Post man Maths.jpg2

Activity 6: TV Character Language Development

You will need:

  • Lolly sticks
  • Print outs of characters
  • Laminator
  • Back drop/Scene

Another favourite TV programme for J back then was Bubble Guppies! Aside from the fact I couldn’t find Bubble Guppies characters any where, TV show merchandise is really expensive! So I made some.  I simply printed off the characters, laminated them and stuck them on a lolly stick.  J played with these at home, in restaurants, at Grandparents’ houses! He literally took them every where he went and I would blush when people saw them!  J would literally recreate the shows, using the new vocabulary he had learned and then went on to develop his own adventures! I genuinely think we should make TV our friend as it can be an excellent way to engage children and develop their imaginations and language!

TV Language Development

I’m only sorry I didn’t take more photo’s of the fun we had back then but hey ho! Now I know how valuable this blog will be as a memory for me! Feeling emotional now!!

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One thought on “Six Easy Play Ideas for a Two Year Old (and older)

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