Beginning reading and math skills are a big part of our daily playful preschool activities. In fact, we often start by playing and end up learning and discussing.
Just this morning we brought the giant bucket of LEGO bricks outside and dumped them out on the deck. My one year old proceeded to kick every last LEGO onto opposite sides of the deck, and so we had ourselves and entire LEGO deck.
Disclosure: This post contains Amazon Affiliate links.
The spread of almost 3 combined containers of DUPLO bricks over the entire deck didn’t bother my 4 year old. (It bothered me a wee bit, but I took a deep breath, sipped my coffee, and moved on with life. A mess of LEGO bricks is small potatoes in the scheme of life)
He got to work right away making a picnic table for our DUPLO people. While he worked, I got my 1 year old to kick the LEGO bricks back towards the center into a contained pile (if you can envision this activity!) I drank my coffee and yes, checked my facebook on the I-Pad.
The boys played for almost an entire hour, building towers and a restaurant (4 year old) and kicking and taking the towers apart (1 year old).
After they were starting to look played out. I asked them:
Can you make pattern tower?
Can you make your tower higher than mine? (let’s let little brother knock them down!)
Can we make a tower with 5 bricks?
How about a tower with 7 bricks? (ooh, we can do it! Yes, it is ok if little brother takes them apart!)
Now what about a LEGO garden?
Yes, a LEGO garden. Let me show you!
Number Recognition and Number Sense:
I showed him the numbers written down on little yellow circles.
We put them in numerical order first.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
Then we talked about what that number meant and counted up to the chosen numbers with our fingers.
And then, I asked my preschooler to choose a number and put it on the yellow, square LEGO. That was going to be our special number for the activity. His job was to put the same number of LEGO bricks around the center that the number said.
To add a literacy component to this LEGO Garden Preschool Math activity, just write the words:
My flower has ___ petals.
on the top on your paper and have your preschooler fill in the number.
Connecting reading, writing, math, and engineering all into an awesome morning preschool lesson that includes a happy Momma who got to drink her coffee and check her Facebook on the deck!
Buying LEGO Duplos:
When purchasing your LEGO Duplo Bricks, all you really need is a large container of bricks. We have found just one 31 piece set is not enough bricks for one child to build with (and I have three!) We bought a large set and 2 extra boxes to extend the play. Most Duplo’s are recommended for children ages 1 1/2 – 5. To keep costs low, watch for them at garage sales, thrift stores, and even your local for-sale-or-trade groups. We were able to double are collection at a fraction of the cost.
For more LEGO inspired learning activities here at the Educators’ Spin On It, we recommend:
Preschool Writing with LEGO Inspired Journal