Learning resources for toddlers.

Learning resources for toddlers.

Trying to expand your toddlers mind and teach them skills at the same time can be difficult, but there are resources out there you can use to help. Here are a few items i have used and found effective in teaching my son that might help other parents and toddlers stuck in a rut. If anyone else has anything they can recommend do please get in touch with a comment or check out my instagram @lifewiththehazelwoods and send me a dm there.

First up flash cards. I cannot rate flashcards enough because they are such a brilliant tool for learning. Remember revising for tests and you made flash cards? Well they work the same for toddlers. They’re brightly coloured and have pictures. They have the word under so you can teach your toddler the word for the photo which eventually they will learn with daily practice. Everyday we’ve used these since a little before his first birthday. Hes learnt a lot of animal names, foods, objects,weather and more. He can now basically say a whole pack of words now which makes us insanely proud. We have several packs which i have brought which Elijah loves doing you can get themed or basic first words, we have some ones that show counting objects for when hes older as well.

Puzzles are great too. We have quite a few types. We have some which are wooden boards where you take the shapes away and put them back in which are quite easy to do but teaches shape sorting. We also have vehicle, animal and letter ones to teach him words too. We have words to words to object animals. We have wooden puzzles also where we match the body parts. Puzzles are so good for making your child learn more, gain more skills and also strengthens their muscles using their motor skills. It also helps their memory including muscle memory.

Lacing beads. This teaches your child about colours and shapes. This also teaches how to thread through beads into the lace and counting as you do it. Teaches hand eye coordination and muscle memory again. This is also one of the things they access where children are too to see how they’re able to use their joints.

Arts and crafts products.Colouring books and crayons, Jumbo and thin crayons can be great for the wrists and finger development. We use it to teach colours and patterns and try to get him to copy us when we do shapes. We love painting and exploring patterns and objects and how we use things to paint. We do themed painting and use objects we find such as toys, objects from the outside or pasta. We love doing stickers which Elijah loves them and sticking them on the paper or on things.

Word books, i cannot stress how important reading is to children. They are sponges from when they are born. We have read to elijah since he was in my tummy and we make a effort to read atleast 4 books a day together. Word books with pictures and words are really good because they teach them the word for things. Elijah was so proud of himself when hes learn all the words in a book and would bring them to show us all day long.

Play dough. Teaching your child textures, making things and just using their hands and objects are a great tool to use. They come with good play sets too so as they get older you can make them explore more play. Like a dentist set, beach set, food making set. Playing together is lovely too.

Bricks, counting and balance all come into this. They have fun building towers and learning balance. You can also use them to count.

Magnetic fish teaches hand eye communication and team work.

Food is probably the best one! Teaching them too cook is such a fun experience and lots of messy play! Put food colouring in cooked spaghetti and let them go wild! Bake cakes and shape cookies! Colour pasta shells and rice for necklaces and arts and crafts activities!

The possibility’s are endless, just enjoy learning and having fun together!

Did school/college really help me in life.

Did school/college really help me in life.

In someways I could argue yes it has helped me. I mean it’s taught me to behave and how not to behave. It’s taught me how to make friends and stay in contact with some of said friends. It’s taught me how to read and write. I’ve learnt about our history and heritage. I’ve learned who I am and what I will become. It enabled me to have a education which I can use in life. It’s enabled me to work in my field and get further because of it. I’ve got the option to go to university if I wanted to train to do things I may want to do as I have the grades.

It hasn’t however taught me basic lessons. Yes I may be able to work out change for a tenner if I buy something but it hasn’t taught me the most important lessons. I wasn’t taught how taxes work, how much I’d have to pay. I wasn’t taught about how much childcare would cost and that I may have to leave my job as the pays not worth it. It doesn’t teach you how to look after a child. The health and social project where I was given a toy doll at 13 to hurdle around everywhere like a teen mum taught me shit all. It didn’t teach me how to be a mum. It didn’t teach me how to wash, bath, feed and comfort a Ill child. The food tech classes taught me basic cooking and not how to make meals. I can make a good salad or cake from recollection but that’s where it ends. I did however learn to wash up what a shitty life skill that is!Wood tech taught me how to saw and shape wood but I’ve never had the need to make a wooden key chain. Graphics taught me how to design but very badly, terribly and not from scratch using other people’s bits and bobs to make my own work. I never learnt to take photos and learnt myself from just doing. In citizenship I didn’t learn that if I vote there’s basically no point as democracy is pretty much screwed in this country.

I was never taught how to run a house and clean, I taught myself to sow and cook and clean. I wasn’t taught how much my bills would cost or what I would need for a house. I was never told how to turn on the heating and the cost that would incur. I was never taught how to fix a leak or paint my house. I was never taught nutrition. Sure we’d touch on it but we where never told how to look after ourselves and what to eat to feel good and be healthy. I’d go shopping when I first moved out and buy pure unhealthy crap and rack up a massive bill. We where never taught to talk about our feelings, we never had support for emotions. We were allowed to be bullied so that our adult lives would become hard and untrusting. We where never taught how to save for a mortgage and work. We where never taught about trolls. We where never taught how to be good wife’s/ mums / people. We were told to address teachers as mr/sir/miss/mrs and not by their names when you never do that now which was supposed to make you unrelatable to the teachers. Something I find bizarre considering they’re looking after you all day you’d think they’d crack a smile when you may be going through some personal stuff at home.

Although I earn a lot to school and am grateful to of received a education. Something I’m extremely proud of that is free in this country. There is so much we should of been taught so that adult life doesn’t hit you with a cold hard slap when you start your first job. So when you move out you’re not stressed out of your mind working everything out in your own way. I will teach Elijah about saving, tax, housekeeping and everything I wish I was taught about as he grows so I know whatever school doesn’t provide I can. Hopefully one day this will change and children will know more than us! Until then teach and share tour knowledge and whilst you learn share that with others too.