Friday, 11 April 2014

Orange Tot school (19 Months old)

Activities for teaching a Toddler colors and life skills
Another week has flown by! We have been so busy this week making preparations for our move (in two weeks!) and a road trip to Germany, where we probably will be once this post goes live. We need some positive vibes though - we are embarking on what seems like an impossible feat: going on a road trip with a toddler! I'll let you know how it goes!  

This weeks Tot School activities were surprising well organised on my part, and we did a lot! I'm not sure how that happened because I feel like I spent the week running around frantically packing a suitcase for the trip, a box for the move, signing documents for said move, and generally trying to stay on top of everything. I'm exhausted and running on very little sleep because to top it off- I've been drinking coffee with caffeine before bed. Not cool. So, in the mornings, I drink more coffee and so I feel a little less like a zombie. 

Apparently, it's been working though because look at everything we accomplished during this week's Orange Tot School theme 

Fine motor skills

We picked up some buttons and had a blast exploring them. To practice fine motor skills, I set up this very simple activity: putting the buttons onto the feathers.  

Welcome to Mommyhood: feathers and buttons fine motor activity

Welcome to Mommyhood: feathers and buttons fine motor activity

Welcome to Mommyhood: feathers and buttons fine motor activity

We also practiced putting orange paperclips on orange paper. We only worked on this for a little bit. The Toddler did a pretty good job, but needed my help. We'll be practicing again soon.  

Welcome to Mommyhood: paperclip fine motor activity


Sorting is never really sorting. The Toddler prefers to scoop and pour, and use his motor skills. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: button sorting

Welcome to Mommyhood: button sorting

We did get a little bit of sorting done though! I explained the colors to the Toddler and we talked about the circular shape of the buttons. 


An orange sensory bin. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: Orange sensory bin

Can you find what's missing in the second photo? 

Welcome to Mommyhood: Orange sensory bin

I set up the sensory box in the evening. When the Toddler woke up in the morning, it was the first thing he noticed when we came downstairs. Did you find what's missing? The mandarins. Even before getting his teeth brushed, the Toddler grabbed both mandarins and instead of handing them to me as he usually does, he set them down carefully on the coffee table and tried to peel one! I had to help him get it started, and he did a fantastic job of peeling most of it. He also got mandarin juice everywhere. It was fully expected. 

After getting dressed and having an actual breakfast, he returned to the sensory bin then went to look at our tot school supplies. He found an egg carton, and started doing this: 

Welcome to Mommyhood: Orange sensory activity

In case you are wondering, yes, the lentils and rice did get everywhere. Yes, I cleaned it all up. Nope, it wasn't that bad, but I really should have put something down on the ground. I guess the coffee didn't help with keeping my logic skills in shape. 

Orange playdough 

One of the most successful activities during the week was this orange homemade play dough. I wrote a post about this activity on Friday so I won't go into too much detail on it again, but it was so much fun! We enjoyed making it, exploring the materials together, and also making Easter carrots with it! 

Welcome to Mommyhood: homemade orange play dough

At first, the Toddler was hesitant to touch it.

Welcome to Mommyhood: homemade orange play dough

He quickly lost that problem.

Welcome to Mommyhood: homemade orange play doughWelcome to Mommyhood: homemade orange play dough

After a little encouragement, the Toddler went wild! He even started throwing it on the floor, then picking it and putting it into the bowl. Tidy boy, he is.

Welcome to Mommyhood: homemade orange play dough

You can get my food coloring free play dough recipe in my post about our Easter Carrot play dough activity.


I'm really going to be holding off working on letters and reading until the Toddler is talking more and is closer to the age of 2. However, I did set up this simple activity. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: letters

I drew an O in orange chalk and let the Toddler spray it with water and use a q-tip to erase it. He enjoyed it, but it definitely wasn't the most successful activity that we did. 

Arts and crafts

Not too much happened in this respect (again).  Next week, I will be sure to really work on including more arts and crafts. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: arts and crafts

I used a simple triangle printable that I made for our Easter carrot project and let the Toddler draw on the carrots with orange markers, crayons, and colored pencils. He had fun with it for a little while, but then moved on. 

We keep paper and crayons available to the Toddler whenever he wants, so I'm not surprised that the coloring activity wasn't that new or exciting to him, but I did like that we combined arts and crafts with learning about shapes! 

Life skills

This doesn't really fit with the orange theme, but we worked on life skills again. I set up a simple activity (again, I really should have put something on floor!) so we could work on washing up.

Welcome to Mommyhood: life skills

We gave the bear a bath, wiped him down, brushed his teeth, and brushed his hair. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: life skills

The Toddler practiced some motor skills by wringing out the cloth. I was pretty surprised to see him doing that because I didn't demonstrate or ask him to do so. I imagine he has seen me do it so many times while cleaning or giving him a bath. He loved watching the water come out of the cloth.

Welcome to Mommyhood: washing the bear

I'm not able to share most of the photos from this activity because the Toddler was only wearing a diaper, but take my word for it - it was a lot of fun!

The Toddler really enjoyed caring for the bear! When he was done getting the bear all clean, the Toddler offered him some hugs and kisses. I melted. 

We also practiced cleaning! We practiced spraying the fridge and then wiping the water away with a cloth. 

I got a spray bottle with water and a small cloth that I put in front of our refrigerator. The Toddler came over immediately and enjoyed had a blast spraying the fridge with water. He watched the water collect into drops and come down the fridge. Then, he used his finger to 'draw' on the water. Lastly, he finally tried wiping with the cloth. Again, another hit! Pretty much any time I set up an activity with water, the Toddler has a blast! 

Saved for later

Lastly, a mini I spy bottle. Okay, we didn't really play with this, but I wanted to include it in this post because it goes with our orange theme. I made this to take in the car for our trip. 

Welcome to Mommyhood: mini I spy bottle

We're going in a group, and I'll be sitting next the Toddler in the car. Why not use that opportunity for some educational activities and continue with tot school? 

I am also taking the paperclip activity because we didn't work on it as much as I would have liked. 

Phew! What a busy week! As always, I'm linking up with Carissa at 1+1+1=1 for the Tot School Gathering Place, the weekly kids co op,  and the Hip homeschool hop.

Thank you for reading,