Cupcake loves working with manipulatives and miniature items, so I came up with these fun activities when she was learning the letter "u."
All you need for these activities are drink umbrellas (the cheapest I found was at Target, near the napkins), Styrofoam circles (2/$1 at the Dollar Tree), and construction paper.
First, we did color sorting. I placed colored construction paper circles on the circles and she poked the umbrellas on the the color to which they belonged (also a good fine motor practice).
For counting, I placed a number of counting bears under the umbrellas and had her count how many bears were on the beach.
Cupcake will engage in just about any activity if we include music, so I try to include it when she gets distracted. For the bears, I sang (to the tune of "Did You ever see a Lassie?), "Oh many bears, how many, how many? Oh, how many bears are on the beach?" And then she counted them. This song works for just about any activity we do with the bears!
Lastly, we squeezed as many bears as we could under the umbrellas and counted how many bears fit on the beach.
She thought that was pretty funny. When we finished, I let her play with the bears on the "beach." She liked to make them swim in the ocean. :-)
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