My 3 year old has been asking lots of questions about houses recently: what’s under the floor? which room is on top of this one? how many families live in a block of flats? I’m also keen to encourage her to pick up a pencil and do some mark making and drawing, as this isn’t an activity she tends to choose for herself but obviously is a skill she needs to develop. I always like to take the individual child as a starting point for any activity I’m planning – what are they interested in and what skills are they currently developing?- so with all this in mind we decided to make some model houses.
We used some cardboard boxes which we opened up flat. This gave us a clear side to draw on and it was much easier using a flat surface rather than a 3D one. We cut out a door to start with and coloured it and the roof in with wax crayons. We talked about what shapes windows are and had a look at the ones in our house. I helped my daughter cut out some rectangles from some paper and she used a glue stick to stick them on by herself. She used a crayon to put crosses on each of the windows to make them look like the ones we have at home. I was really pleased to see she carefully held the crayon in a palmar grip and placed the crosses right in the centre of each window – she’s improving her pencil control. She also added some beautiful flowers, which gave the opportunity to try making vertical and circular marks. Every front door needs a house number so she checked our number line and decided on a ‘3’. We then folded it all back up again and fastened it with stickytape – very simple but I think it looks great and she’s really pleased with it.
So that’s fine motor skills, mark making, decision making, numeracy, three dimensional modeling, shapes, colours, art, collage, and some ‘Mummy and me’ time – all from her current interest in houses. Amazing how many skills you can nurture in one simple activity.