Toddler Learning Games – 5 Home Education Games
Toddlerhood can be loads of fun, chock full of belly laughs, impromptu dance parties and tickle wars, but it can also be challenging to keep your child engaged and entertained.
Games are a wonderful distraction for toddler‑aged children, and the best part is that your kids are learning without even realising it. So while it might be tempting to default to the TV, next time you're stumped for ideas why not give one of these tried and true toddler learning games a try?
According to Gee, a researcher at Stanford, skills such as patience and discipline are better learned through the context of games rather than traditional classrooms and textbooks. That means when kids engage in games, not only are they learning valuable cognitive skills, they're also learning key behavioural skills, like how to stay focused on a single task.
As many parents of toddlers can attest, focus is a key struggle in their day‑to‑day parenting. So if you're looking for ways to help keep your child focused and learning, try one of our five toddler learning games below.
Top five toddler learning games to try at home
1. Memory card games
Memory card games are beneficial on multiple levels and are great at encouraging children to pay attention to the finer details. In addition to activating problem solving and critical thinking skills, memory games are a wonderful way to help kids distinguish the difference between objects.
In addition to memory card decks, a great at‑home hack is to use your child's blocks and hide them under plastic cups. You can start with three pairs of blocks (same colour and shape) and then ask your child to lift up two separate cups to see if there's a match, continuing until they've found all the pairs.
Memory games: Reading Eggs Junior
2. Counting games
Counting games can be a lovely distraction for children. In addition to developing numeracy skills, they help focus children on the task at hand. For example, if you're trying unsuccessfully to get your toddler to climb the stairs, ask them to help you count each stair and you might be pleasantly surprised by their willingness to suddenly do what you ask.
Other fun counting games to try are counting fingers and toes, number of trucks on the road, dogs at the park, people wearing hats – the possibilities are endless!
Counting games: Reading Eggs Junior
In addition to teaching children about shapes and improving memory skills, puzzles are the perfect toddler learning game as they hit all key learning areas:
Puzzle games: Reading Eggs Junior
Toddler learning games such as matching reinforce flexible thinking and memory skills, both key to developing school readiness. Try gathering everyday items around the house like kitchen utensils, socks, shoes etc. and then ask your children to match each item with their partner.
Matching games: Reading Eggs Junior
5. Sorting games
Fantastic for encouraging critical thinking skills, blocks, puzzles pieces and chunky shape toys are ideal for playing sorting games. Ask your child to organise them in multiple ways, such as by colour, shape or size.
Toddlers love to get involved and feel that they are being helpful, so try making a game out of sorting the laundry. To keep it simple stick to one item to begin with such as socks for example and ask them to put all the socks in one pile. You can then turn it into a matching game by asking them to match each set of socks – your child will delight in helping you complete this simple task!
Sorting games: Reading Eggs Junior
Try Reading Eggs Junior for free
Filled with hundreds of toddler learning games, Reading Eggs Junior, for ages 2–4, is part of the multi‑award winning Reading Eggs programme. Designed by experienced primary school teachers, the quality education programme features colourful characters, exciting activities, games and rewards to keep children motivated to learn and continue building essential reading skills.
See how your child's focus skills and excitement for learning improve with a free trial of Reading Eggs Junior here. Once you sign up you'll receive access to hundreds of read‑aloud books, alphabet games, songs and phonemic awareness activities your child will be sure to love. Available to play on desktop, iOS and Android devices.