Today was a hectic travel day for us, but I was determined to use our travel window more wisely than I usually do in order to ensure a little bit of “secret” learning along our way. What we did was incredibly simple, but all three of my kiddos enjoyed it, and it gave us an exciting 45 minutes without whining, complaining, or asking, “Are we there yet?”
- Alphabet Hunt: Before we left, I ran to the computer and made two simple tables of two rows each, each with 13 columns. Letters A-M were in the top row, and the row beneath the letters were empty; N-Z were in the top row of the second table, and the row below them were empty, too. I made the letters in all capitals, in a large size. I used sturdy white paper, and I made two full alphabet tables on each sheet so I could give each child a half sheet. The finished boxes beneath the letters were almost the perfect size for a normal chart sticker. Here is Alphabet Hunt I, in uppercase letters, and here is Alphabet Hunt II, in all lowercase letters.
Just when my troops began to get antsy, I told them that even though they were stuck in their car seats, they were going to go on an Alphabet Hunt (woo-hooo!) and that all they needed for their hunt was one piece of paper and some stickers.
I showed them how the hunt worked on the sheet: Okay, friends, we have 26 letters of the alphabet to find today. Let’s see who can find all 26! I’ll show you how to use your hunt chart. I need to find a letter ‘A’. Who can help me find one? Wow! That was quick! You’re right, there’s an ‘A’ on that truck, Maddy!
I put one of the chart stickers under the ‘A’, handed them their own cards and two half-sheets of stickers, and they got rolling! They loved it, and even though Cora was way too young for it, she loved putting stickers all over her card.
- an ‘in the-house alphabet hunt‘;
- an ‘around the neighborhood alphabet hunt’ (once it warms up);
- a ‘grocery store alphabet hunt’ (if I get desperate in the next few cold winter weeks);
- a ‘number hunt’ cards so we can work on numbers and number recognition. (Here is a Number Hunt board I made a few weeks later.)
The possibilities are endless for sneaking some learning in when it involves letter/ number recognition and chart stickers. . .