Before having children I was a teacher and so was my sister. My sister taught Kindergarten and I never understood some of the things she would get excited about and still does to this day. She is obsessed with the dollar section at Target, frequently emails me deals on children's activities from Amazon and always talks about learning games from Lakeshore Learning. I didn't know if Lakeshore was an actual lake or some sort of kindergarten teacher lingo that I hadn't heard of.
I quickly found out that Lakeshore Learning is an awesome company that carries hundreds of learning manipulatives, games, art supplies, teaching aids etc. for all ages. (Magnetic Alphabet
Ok this one above is my favourite and Cairo plays with it probably every other day right now. Cairo is 2.5 and on a good day, can recognize about 4 letters. These magnetic pieces help him build letters and I love that this is an activity that I can do with him or he can do by himself.
These Alphabet Learning Locks were so cool - matching lettered keys to open that letter lock and the other side has an animal or object that starts with the same letter. Cairo needed a lot of help on this one; if I gave him the exact key and the lock that goes with it, sometimes he could get it open by himself. Each day he gets a bit better as his fine motor strength develops, and that's all that counts!
This Light up Math Activity Center is super beneficial for learning how to count and identifying numbers. There are lots of different sheets for kids to do to differentiate the learning and also making the concepts either simpler or more complex. Plus, who doesn't love using a light-up board?!
Finally this last one was the crowd pleaser. Everyone wanted to use these Float and Find Alphabet Bubbles in the bath. Each little ball has both a capital letter and lowercase letter on one side with a corresponding object/animal on the other. After we tried this one out, the next few days I had Cairo asking for a bath in the middle of the day just so he could use these again. #winnerwinner and they don't even realize they are learning while they play!
I obviously am on the hunt for great activities for Cairo to do at home (especially on those rainy, winter days) and if I can find some toys, like these from Lakeshore Learning, that also help him learn his letters and numbers while he is playing than I am basically a #supermom. Now if only my dinner was magically cooked :)