Boo!! Happy Halloween... with bonus phonics practice!
What plans have you got for Halloween? Dressing up? Decorating the house? If you have little one(s) still too young for shananigans like trick or treating there are still lots of fun activities you can get into - including ones that help their development: winner!
I LOVE Halloween!! The pumpkin will definitely be lit in our porch to welcome any brave souls that come looking for spooky treats on the 31st! And it's a great chance to get children excited about learning. We will be having some fab Halloween fun at all our Alphatots sessions this week... think spooky songs, cuddly monsters, web-hunting... all with built-in learning activities of course! And the added bonus is that you'll not need to get your own house messy in the slightest! But below are some extra ideas for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers that you can do at home...
For children ready to blend letter sounds into short words, there are some great Halloween words you can build into games and activities... At our Halloween session of Alphatots Wordsmiths we had great fun with a witchy word hunt, following the clues from a 'hat' (witch's of course!), to a pumpkin 'cup', to a 'pot' (a cauldron full of monster brains, AKA cold cooked fusilli pasta, and treats)! We also made bat decorations and then practised our writing skills by writing the word 'bat' on the back of it!
Toddlers learning their letter sounds can get involved in some fab spooky fun. When my son was that age he loved making magic potions using various disgusting ingredients such as witches toenails (coconut flakes) and monster snot (apple sauce)! If the ingredients are labelled up you can point out the initial letter sounds or hide plastic/wooden letter shapes within the ingredients and make letter spells! Just make sure all your ingredients are safe to eat, as they're sure to want to taste it all!
Babies and toddlers
For babies and toddlers, Halloween is perfect for some messy sensory play... And again you can still get letters in there to familiarise them with what they look like! How about some pumpkin-coloured jelly to plunge their hands into to dig out wooden letter shapes?! Or basil seeds (or chia seeds) soaked in water (it makes a super-slimey slime - even better if mixed with food colouring!) with spoons to stir it up with, developing fine motor skills?! This last option is safe to taste but don't let the tiddlers eat a whole bowl - these seeds aid digestion so too many would make for a poorly tummy. A little nibble is enough!
So Happy Halloween!! Don't forget to join us for some spooky fun at Alphatots this week!