Updated: Nov 2
Hi everyone! We hope you have been staying home and safe during this circuit breaker period. Our teachers miss their students and hope that this period will end soon. You may be worried and feel exhausted from trying to keep your little ones engaged while you work from home.
Fret not! Here are five fun and engaging activities that you can do with your children at home. These activities will help children to remember what they have learnt in previous lessons, and have fun at the same time.
Are you ready? If you are, scroll down to find out more!
1. Colourful high frequency words and letter
This activity works on children’s concentration skills and hand eye co-ordination. It is a simple table activity.
What you need: 1. Tiny bits of coloured paper (get your child to tear it up – it’s a great activity to practice fine motor skills) 2. A4 paper 3. Glue 4. Marker
For Nursery children: Write the letters that they have learnt on the A4 paper, apply glue and have your child paste the tiny bits of coloured paper on the letters. Remember to teach them the letter formation. For example, for ‘t’ we do the ‘I’ first than ‘-‘ second. If you are unsure of letter formations. Have a look at this video if you’re unsure of the letter formations.
For Kindergarten 1 children: Write the high frequency words such as ‘the’ on the A4 paper and have your child stick the bits of coloured paper on them. Another option is to use different materials like cloth or cotton wool to add to the designs of the words.
2. Word/Noun Hunt
This activity improves the blending skills and reinforces the phonetic sounds for Nursery children. For the Kindergarten children, this activity builds their reading skills and recognition of what is a noun.
What you need: 1. Post-it notes 2. Marker
For Nursery children: Write the letters on the post it notes and paste them all around the house. Give your child the sound of a letter. For example, which letter makes the sound ‘ba’? Get them to look for the letter ‘b’.
For Kindergarten 1 children: If your child has moved on to the middle vowel sounds e.g. ‘at’, ‘in’, write words like ‘cat’, ‘map’, ‘log’ and ‘pen’. Give your child the word and get them to look for it.
Remember that since there are no pictures, it will be challenging for them. However, encourage them to blend and read the words.
For Kindergarten 2 children: Have your child go for a ‘Noun’ hunt. Write a combination of verbs and nouns on the post it notes and paste them around the house. Ask your child to look only for nouns. After they are done, they can write down the words in a notebook. To challenge your child further, ask to them verbally explain what that noun is. They can even categorise them into things, place, animals and etc, etc.
3. Spell Them Right!
Once children are able to identify phonetic sounds, it is important to put them down in print. Learning the skill of spelling phonetically will help them to spell new and more difficult words.
For Nursery children: Make the sound of a letter and see if your child can identify the correct letter and write it down. For example – if you say ‘ca’, your child will write the letter ‘c’.
For Kindergarten 1 children: Say the word out to your child – ‘cat’ and ask them to write it down. To help them, you can break the sound down by slowly saying ‘ca – at’. You can also do this exercise with high frequency words. Take note that some high frequency words cannot be spelt phonetically, so say the word and see if your child can write it down.
For Kindergarten 2 children: For our pre-schoolers getting ready for Primary 1, it will be good if they can spell colours, names of fruits, places (school, market) and the linking verbs as well. This will strengthen their writing skills for coming years.
4. Start a reading routine
Reading enables children to have an extensive vocabulary which will help them in their composition writing in the years to come. It also invokes imagination enabling children to be creative in their writing skills.
For Nursery children: For Nursery children, read simple books to them and ask them to tell you about the pictures and to verbalise their thoughts.
For Kindergarten 1 children: Ask your child to read the readers that we have provided them. If your child is in the later modules, ask them to complete the activities at the back of the readers, this will help with their comprehension skills.
For Kindergarten 2 children: The children can also use the readers or you can go to the NLB website to find suitable books for your child. The books are free and there is a wide variety of books to choose from.
Pro tip: If your child is unsure of a word, ask them to write it in their vocabulary notebook. Please help to explain the meaning of the word to your child as this will help them expand their vocabulary. They can go back and review the words in their vocabulary notebook to help them remember the new words they have learnt.
5. Fine Motor skills for Writing
Developing fine motor skills and strong finger muscles is the first step to helping children write well. Once they can hold a pencil steadily, writing letters and lines will be a breeze for them.
For Nursery children: At this age, your child may struggle with penmanship, however, this can only be improved through consistent practice. Here is a fun activity that will help them get better and have fun at the same time.
Find some old newspapers at home and all you have to do is – TEAR!
Children can rip very well but carefully tearing is a skill. Ask them to tear out particular pictures or articles. They can do a simple craft with the torn pieces to add to the fun!
For Kindergarten 1 children: Scissor practice is very useful for penmanship. Get children to cut out curves, zig zag lines and straight lines. Please ensure that they are supervised. Scissor practice helps to improve hand eye co-ordination and concentration.
For Kindergarten 2 children: Have your child complete penmanship practice activity sheets, these can be found here or here. As your child has probably started writing sentences, remind them on the finger spacing between words as well as to ensure g, p, q, y, and j have their tails under the line. You can get children to illustrate their writings and they can even create their own books. This will help them to have ownership and grow their interest in writing.
We hope these activities and tips will help you and your children during this period. Most importantly, have fun while doing these activities with your little ones!
Stay home! Stay safe!