Our featured tot toy this week is a rock, well actually 26 alphabet rocks!
. . . And some nest and stacking buckets.
Having just vacationed at the beach, rocks supplied most of my boys’ entertainment for 3 days. However, when we returned I decided to turn the rocks into something educational for Mr. Smiley (2), who will be entering Tot School this fall!
What can you do with rocks and nesting cups?
Wow! A lot of cups and a lot of rocks is enough to make a great play time with Mom! Mr. Smiley at first just had fun picking up his rocks, setting them down, putting them in a cup, dumping it, giving one to me . . . etc.
- Play hide and seek.
Place a rock(s) under the cup and have your Tot discover what is hiding. Say the sound and the letter on the hidden rock when it is uncovered. By mostly using the sound of the letter instead of the name of the letter, your child will automatically sound out words rather than see symbols.
- Shake Shake
Toddlers love to shake and make some noise! Place a rock in two similar sized cups and let them shake, shake, shake. It makes a wonderful thumping noise. (Make sure the cups are somewhat secure. Flying rocks don’t feel good. This activity definitely requires some supervision.)
- Guide your Tot’s fingers over the letters and repeat the sound and/or letter painted on the rock. (I used puffy paint for this very reason.)
- Stack the rocks or have your Tot place the rocks in the cups and stack the cups!
- Place the rocks in a line.
- Make shapes using the rocks.
- Sort by rock size.
- Allow them to GENTLY toss the rock into the largest bucket.
- Take two rocks together and have them tap, tap, tap the rocks. This makes a delightful sound!
P.S. If you happen to make your own alphabet rocks, I highly recommend that you use prune-sized rocks. I went for larger and heavier rocks. In hindsight, it would be safer for myself and our dog to have smaller, lighter rocks!
You can see this and other toys we feature here on our website all on one page. We will add all of the toys we feature with links back to the blog posts!