I love Valentine’s Day, so we got started with the theme early in this house. The activities that I’ve been focusing on for my toddler are all educational in some manner. Most involve color sorting and/or fine motor skills (two things she’s getting better at continually, but still needs to practice). Almost all the items we’ve used for these activities came from the Target $1 bin, the recycling bin, or my craft bin.
The $1 bins had a bunch of Valentine’s Day themed pom-poms that we used for color sorting. I took some cardboard rolls, covered them in coordinating colors of construction paper and asked Pook to start sorting. I provided some tools for her to use, but she preferred to just use her hands.
Another activity we did was transferring candy hearts from bowl to bowl. (Pooky doesn’t know they’re edible yet.) I provided a spoon, but again she preferred her hands. When prompted, she simply picked up the spoon and held it in the other hand. (This shows me she has a ways to go until she’s comfortable using it. We’ll keep working on it.) Pook decided pretty quickly that it would be faster to just dump the contents into the other bowl. (At least she’s working on that skill.)
We did more color sorting with the caps I save from her fruit puree pouches. She was able to complete this task in a matter of seconds. I decided to switch the task from color sorting to transferring. I gave her a scoop (which I was pleased to see she used this time) and changed the containers. She did this activity repeatedly (dumping the lids back into the big bowl and scooping them out again). I believe that means it was just the right level of challenge for her.
We’ve spent a great deal of time lately playing with sparkly pink play-doh. We use it almost daily to make pretend cookies and cupcakes. Again, she doesn’t know the candy hearts are edible, so we’ve been able to use them repeatedly. She seems to especially enjoy making the “cookies” over and over.
Another current favorite activity of Pook’s is drawing on the windows with her window crayons. They keep her entertained for a good deal of time. I decided to cut some hearts out of card stock which I then taped to the windows. I had her color inside the negative space of the hearts. Then I removed the card stock stencils to reveal some beautiful toddler-created Valentine decorations.
Another fine motor activity we worked on was making a Valentine’s Day card.
I began by drawing a heart outline and asking her to color it in with her dot markers.
Then I cut it out and she helped me paste it to the inside of a piece of card stock.
Next I cut out the words “Happy Valentine’s Day” from some themed tissue paper ($1 bin). She helped me glue that to the front of the card. Then I let her pick out some heart and flower stickers and put them wherever she liked. Done! (Simple and almost mess-free.)
We’ve been having a great time doing activities related to Valentine’s Day. We hope you do too.