Friday, May 18, 2012

Make Your Own Puzzle

Love this idea!  I actually found it on Pinterest (The Green Classroom).  I have seen the idea before.  You can actually buy these types of puzzles from teacher stores anywhere, but what a great learning tool!  There were two parts to this great activity.  The first goal was to see how well my daughter could use scissors and cut along a line.  I drew lines on the calendar pages and she cut them like a pro!  I then labeled each piece (from 1-?) and now she can learn numerical order when she does the puzzle.  Had I been THINKING, I would have done something different, because she knows her numerical order.  But it will be good for my son down the road.  She was so proud that she made these puzzles herself, she wanted to make two.  Now she wants to make more.

To make this activity harder there are a couple things you could do. Don't draw the lines like I did for my daughter. I actually did not know that she had got so good with scissors. And instead of numbers (well, full numbers) you could do decimals, fractions or even count up (or down) by 2's, 5's 10's or any other number. You could even do the alphabet! There are so many endless possibilities, but I think the most important part is to let your child be a part of MAKING these puzzles. It's a great learning experience!

Here are some tips and ideas for teaching your child to use scissors!
  •  Be sure to know if your child is left handed or right handed and buy the proper scissors.
  • Don't be afraid.  So many parents don't allow their children to use scissors because they are scared they will wreck something.  Yes, supervision is required.  But teaching them the rules (only cut paper, stay at the table, etc.) is the first step.
  • Show your child the proper way to hold the scissors.  This is a skill that they must learn.  Show them where to put there thumb and finger and teach them how to open and shut.
  • There are so many worksheets and printables out there, but I'm not going to link to them because I believe there are better ways to teaching than a worksheet.  How about making a collage?  Either with coloured paper or with pictures from magazines.  For the beginners who get frustrated because they can only make one snip - How about giving them string so that it just takes that one snip to see results!

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