This is an activity we’ve done on an airplane that works really well.
Prep: I printed out pictures of a road, the water and the sky. You could definitely just draw these as part of the activity on the plane. I then cut out stickers of things that were found in each location. I placed the stickers in a zip-up pencil bag. J pulled out one sticker at a time and decided which setting it should be placed in. This worked really well and kept him occupied for awhile (he had a lot of stickers to place).
We’ve also done a similar activity in a hotel room. I drew a train track, road and lake on some paper and he found stickers to place on each. He was then quite content to drive his cars around the tiny road for quite awhile!
Finally we’ve done something similar at a restaurant. I have a random assortment of items in my purse at any given moment. In this case stickers and index cards. We drew a setting on each one and he sorted the stickers.
These type of activities would also work well for long doctor appointments and car rides.
We do lots of sticker sorting around here since it is a great way for J to practice categories and also helps him with fine motor skills (getting the stickers off really works those pincher muscles). It also requires little prep on my part and the only supplies necessary are paper and stickers!
Here are a couple other examples I’ve posted on in the past:
Sorting Colors with Stickers
Counting with Stickers
We’ve also done shapes, seasons, letters and animal homes. The possibilities are limited only by your sticker collection.
This was an activity J did sometime during the summer when we were talking about how God created the plants. It was simple yet effective and included very little prep work! My favorite :)
During a morning walk, we gathered a group of leaves from a few different trees (or bushes; J was adamant we chose a certain leaf from a bush!). When we got home we examined the different kinds of leaves we chose. How many points do they have? Shape? Color? Smooth or rough?
- Sorry for the dark photo. My normal camera was packed away in a boz so I used my iphone.
Then I mixed all the leaves together, cut out three tree trunks (we used 3 different types of leaves) and J sorted the leaves to replicate the three different trees.
He did this activity on contact paper since I wasn’t sure if glue would hold the leaves in place quickly enough. I imagined a mess honestly and didn’t have time for one this day. :)
Age attempted: between 2 and 2.5 years
J is really into transportation right now. Anything that goes vroom vroom catches his eye. So I thought I’d design a learning activity around this love. To prepare, I printed out three pictures from the internet (a road, the sky, and the sea) and then gathered a box of cars, trucks, planes, helicopters, and boats. (Do you notice that most of the activities I do have little prep!!)
If this works, here’s the link to the ppt I made with the pictures. Categorizing transportation ppt If you can’t get the link to work, it literally takes a minute to search for images on Google and paste them into a ppt. I should’ve thought to add one more category for trains.
With J, I set out the three pictures, having him describe what was on the picture. I then showed him the transportation box, pulling one toy out at a time, and he placed them on the appropriate picture. It was probably too easy for him, but he liked the activity. In fact, he went babk to the activity tray on his own twice more that day and the next when I wasn’t with him. He pulled the tray down and had everthing categorized by the time I noticed. He was quite proud to show dad his accomplishment that night!
Age attempted: 26 months
Other options: You could use pictures of transportation instead of the toys; I think I’ll try more categorizing activities in the future