Fun for Black Hills Early Learners
We are here to bring you fun activities for any child age 0-5 years. We hope you find this useful and helpful during this very unusual time.
Happy learning!
How to find the right activities for your child. Each activities is marked by dots (•):
• = Infant •• = Toddler ••• = Preschooler
Fun Activities
• Gather toys that make noise and create a sound basket. Let your child explore the items in the basket and then click here for 5 ways to expand on this activity.

• Boxes make great play spaces. Link Here to making a Star Box with a string of Christmas lights.
•• The Pool Noodle Stringing Busy Bag. Just cut up some pool noodles (you can probably find them on clearance at this time of the year!) into one-inch sections and put them into a ziptop bag along with a piece of thick string or rope. Pull it out when needed to keep your toddler busy. Link to Activity Here

•• So many great slime recipes and so little time! Here is a simple slime recipe that only requires soap and cornstarch. Link to Recipe Here

•• Play music and encourage your toddler to dance or move in whatever way they like. Then instruct them to stop when the music ends- Freeze Dance. This kind of activity encourages listening skills and self-regulation as they practices stopping and starting.
••• Preschoolers will be amazed at the way the colors dance in this Rainbow Milk Experiment. Link to Activity Here

••• Why wait for a rainbow to appear in the sky when you can  make a rainbow   in a jar ? This sugar density  experiment  is a super fun way for kids to explore  science , and you need nothing more than what you likely have on hand. Link to Activity Here

••• Young children are naturally self centered and giving them playful ways to stop and think about not only how someone is feeling but why someone is feeling like that is a really worthy activity. Make a DIY Emotional Intelligence game with pictures of your own children. Link to Activity Here
Outdoor Fun
Crawling up and down a ramp, hill, or incline is great for strengthening and for sensory input. Don’t be afraid of going outside! Crawling on grass is great practice with a soft landing and provides the opportunity for some great  tactile  input too.
•• Great fine motor activity with this easy DIY Baby Sharks Sensory Bag. Link to Activity Here

•• Make your child an outdoor musical play area with recycled cans and jingle bells. Get them involved by letting them paint them. Link to Activity Here

•• Play follow the leader. Hop, skip, frog leap, walk, run, etc. See if your toddler can follow you and your movements. You can also have them lead and you follow them! It's a great game for practicing following directions and gross motor skills.
••• Make a nature cutting bin that is free, easy. Part science, part sensory and part fine motor skills activity. Link to activity Here

••• Explore a large number line outdoors made with sidewalk chalk. Children at varies developmental levels can explore the number line in different ways. Link to Activity Here

••• Do a sink the boat challenge with your child. How many cubes go in the boat before it will sink. Link to Activity Here
Everyday Moments
• At bedtime, give your child kisses on different parts of the face, like their forehead, nose, cheeks, or ears. Count the kisses out loud and name each body part as you go.

• When your child drops their spoon on the floor (and they will), pick it up and give it back to them saying, "the spoon is falling down, down, down!" How long does it take until they drop it again? When they do, talk about falling down again.
•• Play a pattern with your hands and let your child do their best to copy. Try different patterns of sounds and lengths, like clapping or opening and closing your fist. Then you can take a turn t copy what they do.

•• As you make food, invite your child to point out the Food Shapes they notice, like square-shaped, or a straight piece of spaghetti. talk back and forth about what they see. What's the same and what's different about the Food Shapes they found?
••• While driving in the car, pick a color and clap once when you see it. Once your child gets it, change the rules and clap twice when you see it. Then add another color and clap three times when you see it.

••• While brushing teeth ask your child what letters they see on the tube. What colors are on the tube? What color is the paste that comes out? What does the tube remind them of? Can it be a microphone?
In this video learn how children learn to develop the skills necessary to promote language and literacy early in their life. Through everyday activities, singing, and listening to stories, infants and toddlers build confidence as effective communicators. Link to Video Here
•• Tips for Reading with Toddlers.
  • Toddlers learn by doing. Allow them to move while you’re reading or choose quiet toys they can manipulate during reading time.
  • It’s okay to flip through the pictures with an impatient. toddler–attention spans are only about two-minutes long at this time!
  • But don’t give up on reading! The more you do it, the more stamina your child will have
••• Write your child's name with a highlighter and have them trace it. Or use this name tracing activity that has preschoolers tracing their name three times for  a fun way to learn their name. Link to Activity Here

••• Taking a road trip or while running errands keep your child busy with this Letters on the Go Activity . Link to Activity Here

••• Video with 3 simple Language and Literacy activities to do with your preschooler. Link to Video Here