Playtime! Activity: Block Party

Tired of your kid’s same old “build a tower, then immediately knock the tower down” routine? Add this simple twist to your usual block-stacking activity, and it becomes fresh, fun and educational, too!

Who It’s For: Kids ages 1–5
What They’ll Learn: Counting skills, motor skills, measurement, comparison, how gravity works
What You Need: Whatever kinds of blocks you have handy – Legos, Duplos, those cardboard ones that look like bricks, or some straight-out-the-old-school wooden ones

Don’t knock this over with my outie, don’t knock this over with my outie…

Next time your little construction worker starts sending a homemade skyscraper as high as it can go, try suggesting a different goal to work toward instead: “Let’s build a tower that’s exactly your height, and then we can count how many blocks tall you are!”

Counting blocks is a cool addition to the typical stacking task, because incorporating number talk and games into everyday interactions is a great way to help your kids learn basic number skills that they will build on in school. And it’s important to start learning about number early, because the more kids know about number when they begin kindergarten, the better their math grades tend to be through high school!

Our daughter was adorable at the measurement aspect of this activity. Starting when the tower barely made it past her knees, she decided that she needed to measure herself against it after every new block, just in case that last tiny little square she added somehow made the thing shoot up to her full height.

Our son liked it too. Although we’re pretty sure he was mostly just trying to build a tower the height of the cat. Or pet the cat. Or attack the cat.

(It’s such a fine line, you know?)

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