With Baby Miss almost 2 now, she’s starting to make a lot more connections, and seems to be learning new words, signs (we do sign language with her), and understands more every day.
Because of this I started a few months ago to work on “themes” with her. This basically means that for one month we do crafts, read books, and explore a specific topic. With this young age, you want to make sure the theme is simplistic (ie dogs, instead of pets); then as they grow older you can expand the topics.
Themes are a great way for young children to explore in depth, a topic. It has helped to teach Baby Miss new vocabulary, such as “apple” and “pumpkin”.
The use of themes in no way means that every activity you do has to be part of that theme. I like to offer at least one new craft, book, or activity that has to do with the theme each day. We also repeat a lot of activities (depending on interest). The rest of our day is spent following your little one’s interests (which is important in itself).
I like to vary the activities for Baby Miss; this means that some activities are art related, some music, some language, some sensory, some practical life, and some gross or fine motor related. This way the theme is seen from all angles, as well as offering your little one a chance to explore the topic in their own way. Every child learns differently. Some prefer to learn by moving their bodies, other by reading, some listening, etc. By varying the activities, you offer your child some experience in each of these. It will also help you to discover your child’s strengths and the areas they may need some more help on.
Here is the list of themes that I came up with Baby Miss (2 yrs). The Bolded item is how I will “update” the theme for next year when Baby Miss is 3.
Sept: Apples On the Farm
Oct: Pumpkins Fall
Nov: Leaves Family and Friends
Dec: Christmas Christmas
Jan: Rain Winter
Feb: Colors 5 Senses
March: Bunny Spring
April: Numbers Numbers
May: Fish Ocean
June: Flowers Garden
July: Water Summer
August: Alphabet Alphabet
I will try to make sure to post more of the activities that I do with Baby Miss, based on these themes; so you can get some ideas for your own little ones.
Oh, and by the way. Baby Miss and I went on a “leaf hunt” today. We walked around the neighborhood collecting leaves that interested us. We talked about their colors, shapes, big and little. After her nap we are going to doing some gluing with them. 🙂