A few weeks ago I bought a new toy from Ikea – I love that none of their toys have any connection to movies/TV shows. Actually, I bought a few toys but only this one has been introduced into the playroom so far.
Yes, we already have a lot of stacking toys but they are not all out at the same time and each has something that makes it a little different from the others. This one is a ‘lighthouse’ – the older children recognized it right away. The toddlers don’t know what a lighthouse is so they just think that top blue piece is in the wrong spot. They prefer to put it like this;
Matching it with the other blue one – they don’t care that it doesn’t have an outer tapered edge, colour is more important.
I like the colours too. Finally a toy that has all the primary and secondary colours and arranges them in colour mixing order – green between yellow and blue, purple between red and blue. Last year I wrote Colour Hunt about how some colours are left out.
I also like that this stacking toy allows the children to try other arrangements too. Some stacking rings have a tapered center post which makes it impossible to put the rings on in reverse order. The younger children get frustrated when they can’t push the smaller rings to bottom of the post.
The older children enjoy arranging this toy ‘backward’ or ‘upside down’. These are some of the patterns they’ve made with this new toy;
So many options from one simple toy. I wonder how many more they can discover?
It was just over two weeks ago that I changed the blocks in the playroom. I put the heavy wooden blocks back into storage and brought out the Duplo blocks. I also put away the big trucks that were in the block area and brought out the coloured baskets.
We’ve used these baskets for sorting colours before and because the Duplo blocks are so brightly coloured I thought the children may be interested in sorting the blocks into the baskets. I place the baskets under the block bin and as I was putting the new blocks in the block bin I sorted them by color above the corresponding basket.
Originally I did it ‘just for fun’. Organizing stuff is ‘my thing’, the little ones are usually more interested in ‘reorganizing’ but I was curious to see how long it would remain like this. It wasn’t until I finished getting everything put away that I realized that if I had put the purple bin and miscellaneous blocks on the left side it would have been the correct rainbow colour order. I just left it that way instead.
The next day when the first children arrived I did ask them to but the blocks away in the ‘correct’ order when they were finished playing with them. These two school-age children are here earlier than the little ones and sometimes they have already left for school before all the preschoolers arrive. I wanted the little ones to have the opportunity to see this particular setup.
Interestingly, two weeks later the blocks still look like this. The younger children don’t tend to take out many blocks at one time and at clean-up time they have been able to put the majority of their blocks in the appropriate section. The older children and I have been moving the occasional mismatched blocks and repairing the blurred lines between the sections.
The older children actually seem to like having the blocks organized. They are the ones who are most particular about colour when they are choosing blocks for their creations. Having the blocks organized by colour means they don’t need to spend so much time searching for the blocks they want.
I’ve also taken this opportunity to get some ‘rainbow’ and colour themed books from the library;
These are our two favourites. There are few words and plenty of pictures to keep the little ones interested. I like the nature themes too;
Can’t wait until there is more colour outside – we’re getting tired of just white and grey and looking forward to rainbows and colour outside as well as inside.
At lunch on Monday, one of the preschoolers entertained us with a creative story. It went something like this;
‘There once was a lady who was in the war and now she hates colour. She uses a bow and arrow to shoot things. The arrows have bad magic and they take the colour away and turn everything grey.”
Wow! Great imagination.
I can relate. Everything outside is grey — and dusty. A few days of rain would help wash all that residue away. Until then we’ll just have to be creative to brighten up the yard.
Yesterday the children were busy with the eggs — sorting and stacking;
Mixing the ‘ingredients’ for soup;
Adding some broth;
And even using the eggs to brighten up the somewhat dismal ‘sunflower garden’ that they planted;
Yes, the snow melted early but we’re getting tired of grey. Bring on the colours of spring!