Friday, February 11, 2011

Learning Your Name with Valentines Games

Life has been crazier than usual around here! We thought we were moving, but now we are staying put for the time being. We are about to leave on a mini-vacation, but I wanted to share some Valentine activities with you before it's too late!

I'm starting to work with Ella on identifying the letters in her name. We have been spelling it a lot, pointing out the letters when we see them elsewhere, and trying to incorporate her name into art projects.

When I hosted preschool co-op a couple of weeks ago I made these felt hearts to play with. I used puff paint to write a letter on each heart (super easy and super cute!) Remember, that our felt board is just our $14 Ikea easel with felt stapled over the chalkboard side (because I hate chalk and needed a felt board). During circle time I had the kids guess which name was which. Another time I gave them the letters of their name and worked with them to re-assemble it. There is so much you could do with these cute hearts, and it was great for the kids to be able to hold and manipulate the pieces of their names.

Using a new heart press, I created this simple file folder game for Ella. Her job is to match the correct letter to the letters on the game board. Of course, it's most beneficial when I play it with her and say each letter. This would be fun to turn into some sort of fishing game, or even just put the heart pieces in a bowl and have her draw out one at a time.

Another simple game that we will be playing in our yurt in the snow this week involves making hearts with the kids names on them. Today I'm going to show Ryan the magical trick of making his own hearts by folding the paper and cutting on the fold. For Musical Hearts spread the hearts on the floor and turn on some good music. When the music stops the kids have to hustle to stand on a heart with their name on it. They can collect them as we go.  For Valentines Beanbag Toss spread the hearts with names on the ground. Toss a beanbag and try to have it land on your name. Collect each heart you land on with your name. You could also do letters of their name. Older kids would have to collect them in the correct order, and younger kids would identify the letters they land on and lay them out to spell their name.

Happy Valentines Day!!


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