Blocks are kind of a staple in most households, am I right?
Here I’ve collected some wonderful ways to play with blocks, so we can maximize our use of these awesomely simple toys. I, as a mother always want my child to make full use of stuff/toys provided and that’s why I bound myself to make tons of easy, fun activities (keeping his interest in mind) from a single toy.
Wooden blocks / Lego blocks are a staple of childhood for decades, maybe even centuries!!
Playing with Lego and Duplo blocks works on fine motor skills, plus they can be adapted for literacy and maths !!
Fun filled and easy way to play with building blocks/lego/wodden blocks-
- Counting with blocks
We always have a lot of fun with counting. And a lot of fun with blocks. This will also help to recognize numbers for younger kids and also will make them understand what each number means. Teaching numbers to kids at an early stage gives a kick start in developing math skills for long run. We’re focusing on counting and understanding that numbers represent a specific number of items.
How to do –
* Prepare a counting graph with a line for every number.
* One-to-one correspondence is practiced by placing the appropriate amount of Legos / blocks on each line.
* I let my son choose what order he wanted to do the numbers in and didn’t pay attention to the sizes at this point.
2. Making blocks patterns
Teaching kids the importance of pattern is very important and difficult sometimes. This will also help in increasing concentration.
How to do-
* Make a easy pattern with blocks and ask your child to copy with some other pieces.
* Use different colors to make this interesting and fun.
* For older kids you can draw any pattern on a sheet and ask them to form that with blocks.
3. Improving literacy skills
Initially we start with letter recognization. Later we will shift towards spelling formation and more. This builds observation & recognization skills
How to do-
* I painted blocks with some alphabets.
* Ask my kiddo to match it with some alphabets flash cards.
If you don’t have alphabets flash cards just draw it on some papers sheets.
* Encourage your child to pronounce the sound of the alphabet.
* To make it playful dance/act like the alphabet/ make different sounds.
4. Sorting activities
This can be done in many ways-
-Pom-pom color sorting with same colored blocks.
-Piling / tower forming / placing into bucket or just spacing different colors / size.
5. Blocks matching.
To build recognisation skills , this is the best practice.
How to do-
* I have traced different blocks pattern in a sheet .
* Then asked my son to match it considering shape, size and colour.
He did this with so much of concentration and I was successful to engage him for hours.
6. Blocks painting
Painting always attract toddlers. They are very curious for different colours and texture. Let them explore their imaginations. This can be a bit messy but at last creates lots of fun. Dip blocks in paint and form several beautiful patterns.
How to do-
* Press the lego/blocks into the paint.
* Then onto the paper , its as simple as that.
* Try out different surface of each block – the top with its raised dots, bottom has lines and open circles.
* Let them explore, as each side makes a different and interesting paint.
7. Blocks maze
Do try this for super active toddlers. Form maze with blocks anywhere in your house, use it in different forms. We did for car racing /
parking/ jumping jacks. Build your own imaginations . While the building part was fun , we enjoyed playing also.
8. Tower building
Building blocks are an excellent way to learn through play. It helps children to develop motor skills, spatial skills, problem-solving skills, creativity and concentration. This is the Basic play with blocks.
9. Shape Activity: Sorting Shapes of Blocks as a Graph
Helps kids to sort the shapes. It is always fun to see what shapes they knew and what ones they needed help with. Builds Basic shape identification also.
How to do-
* Create a ‘graph’ to sort shapes on, you can also tape a large piece of paper on floor with painter’s tape(to make it attractive).
* Draw them at the bottom edge of the paper and then taped a line in between each to create columns. (You could also just draw the lines instead of using tape, but I have some cool decorative tape right now that made it fun!)
* Let your child sort different shapes, help them if needed.
Always motivate them !.
10. Shadow drawing
Kids usually enjoy making different shape and structure with lego. Use it to teach them the concept of light and shadow. This can be a good practice to pre-writting skills too.
How to do-
* Place a random towered shape block over a piece of paper in opposite to sunlight or artificial light.
* Let you kid trace the shadow formed and explore different shapes and shadows.
* For more engagement time ask your child to rebuild the same shape.
* Colors don’t matter with shadows.
* Shadow sizes don’t always match the block sizes, it keep on changing depending on the angle of the light.
* Cylinders and rectangle blocks leave the same shadow.
11. Letters making
Mold your kids hand movements towards pre-writting skills with block letters. Believe me it will be quite easy for them to trace alphabets l latter.
How to do-
* Draw alphabets in blocks form on a paper / sheet.
* Ask your toddler to place the block over the sheet.
* Follow tracing the same holding your childs figure.
12. Lego spelling formation
Easiest way to teach spellings to pre-preschoolers. I gathered some blank papers and wrote out a variety of letters on it, spacing then about 3 inches.
Then i found blocks with letters that matched with them and ask my son to place them in the correct places. Later we formed some spellings too. Through this teaching spellings was quite easy and we has lots of fun as we continued this with some stories too.
13. Mix & Match puzzles
Puzzles have been loved by kids of all age group and they are very helpful for brain simulation also. Here I have hand painted different designs on a white tape(use can paste white paper) and stick them on blocks. Some designs are made on 2 and some on 3 blocks stacked together. U can use any picture sheet also depending upon the interest of ur kid.
14. Dental hygiene
Teaching the importance of oral hygiene is equally important. Take a large block and ask your child to assume it as jaw with teeth .Play dough represents as food/ junk food that gets in between our teeth. Take a soft brush to get the food out. This is too much of fun as mostly kids like cleaning.
15. Structure Stability Test
Build towers and test its sustainblities.
* We made 3 blocks towers of same height together.
* First was a simple tower, Second with 4 legs, Third was solid structure.
* I then asked my son to roll a ball from a particular distance.
What we observed-
* First two toppled easily while third one was still standing.
* Through this we discussed about stability of structure.
16. Impression making
Play-dough Lego, isn’t this sounds great!!
How to do-
* Spread dough in an even surface and press lego blocks hard over it to make impression.
* Use dough tools to make it similar to lego block.
* Use different coloured dough , form lego impression, stacked them and tried to build some towers.
* Let your just explored.
* Teach them to use the fronts and backs of the Legos to see how they get printed.
* Talked about how they made different designs.
Sounds interesting, isn’t it?!!!!
17. Measuring with lego
Kids are always attracted towards shape and size. Just to create some fun and teaching the concept of length, measurement of objects with blocks.
How to do-
* Take any object/ toy which attracts your child much .
* Ask them to stack blocks ,till blocks tower is equal to that object.
* Allow them to count ,explore the number of blocks used to measure.
Lego bricks are very helpful to teach various concepts, symmetry is one of them.
How to do–
* You just need to divide a piece of paper by coloured tape.
* Place lego blocks on one side leaving the other side blank.
* Explain the concept of symmetry to your kid and ask them to fill the other side .
* Make this activity easy at the beginning and increase the level further.
Can also be done with different colour,shape and size.
19. Frozen blocks
Building blocks ice is quite difficult to make as the shape is not attended easily. But can be made by filling them with water and freezing them.
* Add different colours for fun.
* Place them under running water to remove blocks form ice. If required pour some hot water too.
* Spread a big sheet and ask your kiddo to paint/ feel the texture of icey block .
20. Floor Puzzles
This is super fun and easy activity for kids. Also helpful to build there concepts of space and area.
How to do-
* Tape a square or rectangle on floor (different shapes will turn more learning) with colorful tapes.
*Ask your kids to fill this colorful shapes with blocks.
21. Fizzy blocks
When you mix baking soda and vinegar together, it causes a reaction. You’ll hear a “fizzing” sound once the vinegar touches the baking soda and you’ll see bubbles form immediately.
How to do this Stem Experiment-
- * Upside Down Mega Blocks.
* Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil.
* Flip Mega Blocks over so that you can fill them with baking soda
* Let kids squirt vinegar into the blocks!!
* Also you can build a structure instead of lying the blocks on a flat surface. This will create a waterfall like structure.
22. Lego Cards
I have made several cards in which i have made many possible shapes and ask my son to copy that . This is quite fun as many times my son is clueless and has nothing in his mind these cards help him to make different shapes.
There are nearly endless ways to play with blocks, no matter which specific types you happen to have on hand. These are just my favorite block activities for my son. Do try with your children and share your experience !!