Oh to be a Toddler!

I've been continuing to attempt to do specific (Tot School) things with Taitum each day in an effort to spend one-on-one time with her and expose her to some new concepts. Up until lately, I have found this rather difficult. Her attention span is so short! But I just went along with what she wanted to move to next and simply enjoyed the time with her. Lately though, she has really begun taking an interest in the things I present to her to do! Also, she has picked up things that I had shown her how to do before but that she, at the time, showed no interest in! For example, for Christmas she recieved a Vtech Crazy Legs Bug. I tried to show her how the shapes fit together but to no avail. Then this evening I heard her calling for me from her room (She yells "Mum!" with the cutest little voice!). When I went down to see what she wanted, she started showing me how she could put ALL the shapes in place herself! We were both so excited! Each time she'd put a shape in place we'd dance and clap and laugh! These are the sweetest moments of parenthood!

So here are a few more things we've tried together!

Putting straws in the shape sorter container. Taitum LOVED this! She'd put the straws in and then I'd dump them out and she'd start all over again!

We tried spooning some pom poms from one side of the egg carton to another. She found it very difficult to keep the pom pom on the spoon. As you can see here she tried to pick up the pom poms and place them on the spoon rather than scooping them. I always find it so interesting to see how a toddler problem solves!

Taitum loves playing with the Leapfrog Fridge Phonics we have but finds it very hard to get the letters in when it is on the fridge. Instead, I often place the toy on a baking sheet which makes it far easier for her to place the letters in the right spot. She gets so excited when she does it right and the song plays!

One evening Piper was using water paints and so I thought I'd give it a try with Tait too. We used Q-tips to paint with and I think she found that much easier then using a paint brush and she was *less* tempted to put it in her mouth compared to when we fingerpaint. This activity was short lived though....

Before I knew it we were on the floor putting Q-tips through the holes of one of her stacking cups! This spontaneous activity lasted for quite some time!

This was the same day that Piper did her 'Snowflake Fishing' game. Taitum had wanted so badly to try it but as soon as she got a hold of one of the cards it went right into her mouth, ruining the snowflake card (I know, I know! I should have laminated them!) Anyhow, as an alternative I got out her Melissa and Doug Magnetic Bug Catching Game that the rod we were using actually belonged to. She got frustrated with it so started holding just the magnet part to pick up the pieces, as you can see in the pic! Big sister was nice enough to put the pieces back in place for her afterwards!

In order to be more efficient with my planning time, I'm trying more and more to use things that I'm doing with Piper for Tait's 'Tot School'. Of course, the activity has to be changed in order to be appropriate for her age but at least the materials are alrady prepared and close by. Here the girls are using Piper's ABC Letter Box to work on spooning and pouring. Taitum would simply scoop the pasta up with a spoon and transfer it to one of the muffin tin cups. Piper had a few more steps - she had to spoon the pasta into the measuring cup, then pour it into the muffin tin cups.

This activity started out really well since both girls LOVE getting therir hands into this kind of stuff. But it quickly went down hill when Taitum figured out the joys of throwing the pasta into the air....lovely! I ended up having to remove her from the activity for a few moments and when she returned I sat with her, hand over hand to do the spooning to get the point across that this is how we do the activity! After that she seemed to do much better, although I did have to still give some gentle reminders that we don't throw the pasta....

This Fisher Price Learning Piggy Bank has been another fun Christmas gift that the girls have gotten a lot of enjoyment from! You put the coin in and the pig either sings to you or counts the coins, depending on what setting you have it on! Not only is this a great exercise for their fine motor skills but its been a wonderful way for them to practice taking turns since they both want to play with it as soon as its brought out!

Taitum is also learning to sit at a table rather then a high chair for snack times. She is so happy to be doing 'big girl' things like this! I plan to start introducing open top cups soon as well (heaven help me!). For now we are practicing with smoothies since they are thick enough to not come pouring out everywhere!

And Tait's latest personal accomplishment: climbing the stairs! She came up with this one all on her own! And now that she knows how to do it, thats ALL she wants to do when we are down stairs! Needlesss to say, we've installed yet another baby gate! :)

The hardest part about this age: EVERYTHING GOES RIGHT TO THEIR MOUTH! Its enough to drive a Mama mad! The spoons I can understand. Its a little confusing. And I have to admit, the faces she makes when she puts a pom pom in her mouth are pretty hilarious! But paint, play doh, purple uncooked pasta, wooden blocks....ick! Oh well, I'm sure in a few years from now, I'll look back on these pictures and smile! Besides, how are you going to know what flavor something has unless you taste it? ;)

"Once children learn how to learn, nothing is going to narrow their mind. The essence of teaching is to make learning contagious, to have one idea spark another." -- Marva Collins

Tot School

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Jen said...

Absolutely love it! How old is your oldest DD? My DS will be 1 on Thursday and my DD will be 3 in April. He is joining us now for Tot School so I like to see what kids a little older are doing!

Becky said...

Hi, I came across your blog, I think you doing some good things, I might use some of them in my classroom. I teach one year olds and yes they do put everything in their mouths. thanks, Becky Bluemnky1@yahoo.com

Gina said...

Jen, my oldest daughter is 3 and a half...I post about what I'm doing with her too but link up to Homeschool Creations Preschool corner since the things I do with her are a bit older.

Mama Know Best said...

The pasta spooning and pouring activity is my favorite. I know that have pasta all over the place to clean up is a bummer, but I couldn't help but to laugh when I read about the fun Taitum was having with it.

Visting from Tot School, have a great week with the girls!

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