My son recently began crawling. I anxiously anticipated this milestone, especially since he hit it a little later than most. Once he started, though, he took off! Suddenly he was able to explore new areas and get into all sorts of things. The toys that used to entertain him were no match now for pulling things off a shelf or scanning the floor for anything we might have dropped.
After a few weeks of chasing him around and trying to be hyper-vigilant, I decided we needed to find some new activities to do during the day. I remembered my mother using felt boards in her classroom and decided to try it out with him. It seemed like a fairly inexpensive way to create some fun for my curious boy.
I bought felt at a craft store and attached a large piece to the wall at his height with some poster adhesive. Next, I started cutting out different shapes. While I enjoy creative endeavors such as cake decorating, my artistic abilities do not translate to drawing. But, at the end of the day all that matters is that he enjoys it! We could certainly buy felt sets online, but making them was fun and pretty inexpensive.
I’m just getting started, but here are some ideas of felt sets I created. I organize them by placing them in labeled plastic bags that are stored in a box.
Okay, I’ll admit my son is a little young to be learning his shapes and such, but it’s never too early to start introducing them to him. These sets will not only be fun now, but will continue to be useful when we do start working on those skills.
So far my learning collection includes a shape set, number activity, and a weather set.
Shapes for Songs
Music is a big part of our day, especially since we have many toddler songs we enjoy singing and acting out together. One of those songs is Five Little Speckled Frogs. I decided to make a felt board scene for the song. He likes watching me move the frogs as the song progresses, and it holds his attention a lot longer than me just singing.
Shapes for Stories
While he likes looking at a book when I read to him, I’ve discovered he also loves when I act out the story with felt. So far I just have a set created for The Three Little Pigs. It is fun to watch him giggle and get excited as I act out the Big Bad Wolf blowing down the houses. After the story, he likes to pull up and play with the pigs and wolf himself.
The previous sets are more about me acting them out, or showing them to him. But, I also have some for him to play with that don’t directly require me. For Halloween, I created a pumpkin set with face features so he can decorate his own felt pumpkin. I also have a set with a little boy and clothes that he can dress. There’s even a set to create his own pizza.
The fun with the felt set is unlimited. We can continue to add to our sets as he gets older, and we can always add new books and songs to our rotation.