My daughter has always been a climber. By the time she was a year old she had conquered couches, chairs, small tables, and anything low to the ground. Now, as a toddler, she gets strategic and figures out how to reach the cookies in the top cabinet, or the light switch that controls the fan in the living room. She gets a chair from the kitchen, pushes it to where it needs to be, and uses it to climb on top of a second surface like the kitchen counter in order to open up the pantry. I think to myself, this baby needs to get outdoors more!
But what do you do when you are stuck inside for whatever reason?
So I came up with a simple little game that actually allows your kids to play around with furniture and climb or crawl all over it, and at the same time is educational. You can do these activities with your toddlers and preschoolers to help develop their gross motor skills, fine motor skills, vocabulary and visual discrimination. Just print these free printable preposition cards and you can play the game several ways:
If your child is like mine and loves to climb on chairs or tables, or hide and play underneath them, they are going to love this game! Use a chair or a small table and play the game similar to "Simon Says" by drawing from the pile of cards and directing the child on what to do. For example: stand in front of the chair, stand behind the chair, go under the chair, go through the chair, go around the chair, stand between two chairs, etc. This is not only great for gross motor skills but will also help build your child's vocabulary.
Another way to play this game is by using a miniature chair/table and a miniature person/doll, such as from a dollhouse. Give your child one card at a time and have them position the toys to match what is on the card. If you already did the gross motor exercise, you can remind your child that they are matching the same positions as the ones they were in.
You can also play this as a visual discrimination matching game - just print off a second sheet of the cards, but don't cut them out this time. Give this sheet to your child and have them place the picture cards on top of the matching picture.
Yet another way to play this game - cut out the pictures and words so that they are separate from each other, and have the child match the pictures to the words.