Looking for additional ways to play and sneak in some fun learning with your kids while playing with their Flower Broccoli Box? Have no fear. We’ve got you covered.
If you’ve been around here for a while, you probably already know that my number 1 tip is to follow your child’s lead. You will be amazed where their imaginations will take them! However, if you’re looking for a few ideas to subtly steer the play or maybe your child is having trouble getting started, here are a few ideas you can try.
- Before you read, look at the cover of the book and ask your child what they think the book might be about and what makes them think that?
- As you and your child play with their flower kit, point out that there are all sorts of different parts. Try wondering aloud about what the names of the pieces might be. Then, grab the book and look up the answer using either the table of contents or the index.
- Note: while you’re looking up the information in the book, talk out loud about what you’re doing. For example…”let’s see… if I want to know what this part of the flower is called, maybe I can find a chapter about the parts of a flower in the table of contents.”
- It’s okay, if while you’re doing this your child doesn’t seem to be paying attention and is playing instead. They are still hearing you and absorbing the information.
- Read through the table of contents and ask your child where they’d like you to read.
- If you have the youngest of explorers, it’s okay if the information is a bit advanced for them. They are still being exposed to great vocabulary, interesting pictures, and new text structures.
- While reading, even to the littlest of explorers, point out text features like captions, diagrams, page numbers, headings, and pictures. While pointing to a caption say, “let’s see what the caption says.” You can even follow that up with “a caption shares additional information about the picture.”
- Look at the index and find something that sounds interesting to you or your child. Point to the page number and turn to that page to learn more.
STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Art and Mathematics)
- Identify the parts of the flower.
- Go for a walk and look at flowers. Challenge yourself to identify the different parts of a flower.
- “Plant” a seed in the sensory sand and then watch it grow (aka add the flower and make it bigger).
- Use the flower pot to plant a real seed.
- Take one of the chickpeas and place it in a damp paper towel. Take the seed and paper towel and put it in a ziplock baggie and tape it to the window. Watch it grow. As it grows, identify and point out the parts that you’re seeing. Use the book to identify the stage the plant is in (seed, germinating, seedling, plant).
- After putting the seed in the paper towel, have your child make a hypothesis of what they think will happen?
- Paint the wood flowers.
- Create a flower print and see if your child can guess which flower made the print. Once they’ve gotten it, it’s their turn to create one for you.
*Stay with me, I know it’s a lot of information!
- Connect the flower parts to build flowers.
- Scoop the sensory sand into the flower pot.
- Use the tools to draw and write in the sand.
- Place the petals upside down in the sand to make flower prints.
- Gently press the wooden flower into the sand to make a flower print.
- Squish, squeeze, pinch, and roll the sand in your hands.
These Ways to Play are not meant to be an exhaustive list, after all the possibilities are literally endless, but more of a starting point. They also don’t need to be printed and checked off as you go, but certainly can be if that’s what works best for you and your family.
After experimenting with a few of these, let me know which one worked best for you!