A variety of learning activities for 18 month old toddlers. These are perfect for helping a young toddler develop lifelong skills.
G is 18 months old and is in the midst of a language explosion. He loves repeating the last words of my sentences. So as he’s working, I’ve been making sure to narrate what he’s doing as he does it.
Grab a block of floral styrofoam from The Dollar Tree and add a handful of golf tees. I promise your toddler will LOVE pushing the tees into the foam and then working to pull them out. It’s a GREAT fine motor skills activity!
One of G’s favorite “games” is to drop chunky buttons or poker chips through a slit in an old Puffs container. Where I used to hold the container, he now does it all himself. It’s a great exercise in visual and spatial thinking, as he has to adjust the angle of the button to get it through the slot.
G has started to get some tot trays, such as this sorting tray. I filled a small bowl with automotive beads (I found mine at Joanns Fabrics) and provided an ice cube tray. At this stage, we’re working on letting him explore, naming colors, and introducing the concept of 1:1 counting by encouraging each well to get ONE bead.
Initially (as pictured), I filled two small pitchers (both thrifted!) with marbles, thinking the sound would be satisfying. Although, it turned out to be just LOUD so we replaced the marbles with pompoms and he had fun pouring from one pitcher to the other.
Spread a towel, pour some rice in a plastic container, and grab some tiny objects to hide. This is one of G’s AND M’s (age 5.5) favorite activities. They can sort and sift and discover for a good hour!
Caps and Lids
Whenever G finishes off a squeezy food pouch, I clean the lid and toss it in a wipes container. He loves to get the box out and just play, sometimes pushing the lids through the box’s opening and sometimes stacking. These are super versatile learning tools that we can later use to sort, count, or pattern!
As with all activities, I monitor G so closely and NEVER leave his side (not even for a moment!). This is definitely one of those activities, but it’s also his favorite. I fill a basket with magnets (ball magnets or magnetic disks from Lakeshore are SO much fun) and provide a few magnet wands, too. He absolutely loves to “catch” magnets, clean up by sweeping the wand over fallen ones, and just exploring!
Written by Jill
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