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Energetic 3 year old

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 7:13 am
by heatherly30
I have been trying to get in at least 20 minutes of learning activities each day, but I can not get my son to sit still long enough to do anything. He wants to play. I plan kinesthetic activities, but sometimes learning involves sitting, listening, etc. Any ideas to get him to sit still?

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 8:34 am
by Melenie
At that age it is very hard for them to sit down and learn. DD will not sit down and do formal learning. We did work books for about a week and then she stopped being interested in them. The best thing to do at this age is teach through play. DD knows so much more than her peers at her age and non of it was taught through traditional ways, so it is possible. If you would like; tell me what you want to teach and chances are we have a few game suggestions to help teach it.

Also check out The ultimate book of Homeschool ideas by Linda Dobson. There are some fun learning activities in there for 3-12 year olds.

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 8:51 am
by heatherly30
Thanks Melanie! Nice to know that my son isn't the only wiggle worm out there.

I've mostly been following the Letter of the Week curriculum from the internet. So letter recognition, numbers, shapes and colors. We also visit the Starfall website. He loves that.

He is supposed to start preschool 2 half days per week in September. Who knows what they'll do with him there. Guess they're used to it!

Any ideas you can offer will be taken!

Thanks again!

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 9:24 am
by Melenie
I have never sent DD to preschool so I honest would not know how they do it, but I do not think they expect the kids to sit down for too long at a time either. Most learning is done with crafts and color pages. Children also tend to "copy" their peers so if everyone else is sitting down your DS will not want to be the only one running around.

Here are a few activities that we have done throughout the last 2 years:

We took a basket (I just used the washing basket) and colored balls (you can use anything that you have in a variety of colors). Scatter the balls around the house or yard and go on a hunt for colors. Tell DS to find a specific color and reward him in some way for bringing the right one(we did praise only, but use what works for you). Play this game often and start eliminating the balls or items with the colors that he knows well. After a few days you should be left with only a few colored items and repeat the game untill he know the colors well or is sick of palying it. ;-)

We took construction paper and cut out the shapes that we wanted to learn. Then stick them around the house where they are visible. Play some music and tell him when the music stops he has to run to a shape that you shout out. This is great to get rid of some extra energy.

Another things you can do is cut out smaller shapes and tell Ds to match the smaller shapes with the big ones that are scattered around the house.

The obvious thing to do with shapes and colors is to also point them out in everyday life things. While driving tell him that the STOP sign is a hexagon and so on.

We did and We also printed out letters to color. We play with foam letters in the bath and I made letters from sand paper as well. We make words with our wooden blocks with letters on it. Talk about the letter names or sounds at every opportunity that you get.

Count everything that you get an opportunity to with him. DD did not want to learn to count at about 3 and I just continued to count things in front of her. She now counts to 20 and we are working on number recognition right now.
In the morning we go for walks and identify the numbers on the houses. If she does not know it, I tell her the number and we try again tomorrow.

We also play sidewalk chalk numbers (she loves this). I write the numbers 1-10 on our driveway and she gets to do circles around them. Then we call out a number and she has to find it and jump on it. I started with 1-6 then moved on to 10 once she knew those. If I find she has trouble with a number, I ask her what she wants me to draw for her and she always has a suggestion. So whatever she wants me to draw I try to incorporate the number into it. Yesterday we had trouble with the number nine and she wanted me to draw a mulberry bush so we could run around it. I drew one and put a nine in each mulberry. You get the idea...

Please excuse any rambling, bad spelling and use of punctuation. This was typed with both DD's asking for my attention.

Good luck and let me know if you need more suggestions.

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 10:02 am
by heatherly30
Wow Melanie! You should be a teacher! I would love to have my kids in your class!

My son can count to about 20, and recite his abc's. So I've been trying to work on recognition. I like your ideas about posting things around the house for him to find.

He does not like to color. Don't know why, but he has never been interested in coloring. My husband is quite the artist, so this sorta bothers him.

Thanks for your advice! I need to keep you in mind when I need other ideas!

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 10:09 am
by Melenie
Funny that you mention about coloring, my DD is no too fond of it either. I still do color pages for her and ask her to do at least a few colors on it for me, but it is not her favorite thing to do. :)

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 1:58 pm
by momo3boys
I don't do coloring pages much. I would rather them draw. it uses more creativity. There is also a anti-coloring book. It's black and white pages that are half finished and the child has to finish the mars landing or what it is like at the bottom of the ocean. I also have a great book of pages that are just parts of pictures, a few circles or boxes and the child has to figure out what they want it to be. These tend to be more interesting to those children who like to be busy, there mind is working harder than just coloring pages.

Re: Energetic 3 year old

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 2:40 pm
by Ramona
The one activity I could get my kids to sit still for under age 4 was if I read aloud to them. It had to have lots of colored pictures , and some days they wanted a whole book but other days they wanted me to read one page over and over. Whatever! As long as they would sit on my lap and stay there, or next to me on the bed or couch, I would let them be the boss of what parts of the book I read.

I had to read with a lot of "acting it out" in my voice, and stop and discuss the story as we went along.

I used this daily story time as a bridge to teach them the concept that there are times for sitting still, and "this" (theater, church, story hour at the library, or whatever) is one of those times--just like when Mommy reads stories.