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Education

Moving Games for Babies & Toddlers

shadowThese balancing and movement activities are a great way to help youngsters explore their place in their environment. The ability to locate and change positions in space is an important first step in understanding geometry.


Materials:
household items including:

  • 3″ x 5″ cards
  • black marker
  • length of rope about 8 feet long
  • beanbag
  • an open space for movement

Directions:

  1. Invite your child to help you make a list of different ways to move your body, using the rope as your guide. Write the movements on 3″ x 5″ cards, one movement per card. Here are some suggestions to get you started:
    • walk slowly (or fast) on the rope
    • walk on tippy-toes
    • balance on left foot (or right foot) for 5 seconds
    • walk with one foot on the rope, the other on the floor
    • walk with a beanbag on your head
  2. Lay the rope on the floor in a straight line. Place the pile of cards face down and invite your child to join you. Explain that you will take turns turning over the cards one at a time and doing whatever the top card says.
  3. Have your child turn over the first card, and read it together. Then, YOU DO what the card says. Next, turn over a card, and YOUR CHILD DOES what it says. Take turns in this way until all the cards have been tried at least on.

Parent Tips:

  • Playing background music adds to the fun.
  • For older children, expand the movements to include running and jumping, and walking backward on the rope. You can also use the above movements in a game of Simon Says.
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