Sorting Colors into Wooden Shoes

via biehus.com

It seems only natural to jump from socks to shoes – wooden shoes to be specific!  At its core, this simple activity reinforces early color matching.  It can also be used to develop the fine motor skills of zipping and using two finger to pull out a color sample.

Why wooden shoes, you ask?  When working with children, it is important to create activities that capture their interest.  After all a child is far more likely to independently enter into a learning opportunity when it appeals to her.  It is something like the magnetic draw of a cupcake with homemade frosting on top – the whipped buttercream topping draws your eye to it in a bakery case (not that I usually need much encouragement to order a cupcake)!

This activity was also quite inexpensive to make.  I simply cut up color samples from two color families (red & yellow) from a local home improvement store.  I found the shoes at one of my favorite shops – the Salvation Army’s Family Stores!  Their prices can’t be beat, they typically have a wide selection of unique materials and the money you spend there goes right back into their important work.

Too difficult? If your child is not yet able to open a zipper, you may want to first provide some guided practice on a clothing frame with a zipper.  This video offers a great demonstration of how to use one.  In my experience, the zippers on actual clothing are often the most difficult to manipulate and should be tackled only after a child has had success with a zipper on a dressing frame or on little bags such as the one pictured above.

Too easy? Your child may be ready to make finer discriminations in color.  As a simple modification, you may choose to have your child try to sort colors that are more similar in hue such as orange and yellow.  I would also recommend you consider some of the wonderful ideas shared by Pink & Green Mama on her blog!

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