It always amazes me how smart kids are and what they are capable of! Before having kids, I didn’t understand how quickly they can learn something and often times it is before you even realize you have taught them something. Over the past two years, I have been more creative than I ever have been and have become an expert at spelling out loud when it’s something I don’t want my daughter to hear!
When my daughter was a year and a half, I noticed she was actually understanding what I was saying and was following simple directions. She started having “favorite” toys and crayons, and would notice when a specific toy was missing or out of place. This was in March of 2020 and we were all beginning to stay inside. Like many of us, I remember thinking, wow… I have to think of something to keep us busy! I of course love a good craft, but we needed some other educational activities to keep us busy.
I started brainstorming and began researching at what age a child should know their colors, numbers, and alphabet. Turns out there is a lot of information (and opinions) out there. And really, there is not a specific age. It’s all dependent on your kid and their interests, and your schedule! So for me, I had a lot of extra free time, and I decided to try to teach her colors. It couldn’t hurt to try!
I tried simple activities, like flash cards, color sorting of toys, and had a book about colors. It seemed like she was sort of getting it, but had a hard time sitting still long enough to absorb the information. Our learning method needed to be a more hands on mobile activity. This sparked the idea of a “matching game” where she could take colored stickers and put them on the wall. I knew this would be fun and keep her moving, perfect for her little busy body!
I bought my supplies online:
That’s all you need!
Children at this age can only process a little at a time, so I suggest starting with 3-5 colors. Pick which colors you want to start with, and tape the construction paper to a blank wall in your house. Once you have the paper up, be sure to talk about what colors you are using. If you don’t talk about it, they may have a hard time figuring it out on their own, especially if they have never done something like this before!
Get out one page of the stickers and have them take a “blue” sticker to the “blue” paper. If they aren’t sure, gently remind them which paper is blue. Once they get the sticker on the paper, be sure to praise them and let them know how proud you are! Encouragement gives them reassurance and is the best motivator for little ones to keep going.
Move onto the next color continuing to assist them. Rotate through the colors as long as your child’s attention will last. It could last 20-30 minutes, or maybe even less. But don’t be discouraged. Learning colors, just like everything else, takes time and practice. The more you practice, the better they will be. And you will be surprised how quickly they will learn!
My only other suggestion for this activity is to try to set this up in a space that is free of toys or a space that has a limited amount of toys. When fun things are around, it is easy for little ones to get distracted and might not be as willing to learn! And be sure to H A V E F U N!