This is another great idea for teaching colors, shapes, numbers, letters, or anything else you can ask a child about. When they answer correctly, they get to make the right lid "clank!" Other examples on this blog, this blog, or this blog.
* Metal can
* 10 frozen fruit juice can tops (they don't have sharp edges)
* 10 different colored pieces of paper (red, blue, yellow, green, orange, purple, pink, black, white, brown)
* Double-sided tape
* Contact paper
* Exacto knife
* Clean out and dry your can
* Cut a piece of paper (or 2, depending on the size of your can) to wrap around the can. If you want, write "clank can" on it and decorate it
* Cut an opening in the lid of the can (using the exacto knife) to put your "clanks" in
* Clean and dry the juice lids
* Cut 2 circles out of each piece of paper to fit on the top and bottom of each juice lid
* Use a piece of double sided tape to secure the colored circles
* Cover the circles with contact paper (so your tot doesn't ruin the circle)
* Ask your child "can you find the blue top and put it in the can?"
* Drop your tops into the can and enjoy the noise while you learn about colors!
This tool teaches colors, fine motor skills and coordination. You can use it to teach any skill really, and even reading comprehension.
Plan in action:
Boogie loved the clanking sound, as Hubby and I were sure he would. He did not really understand when we were asking him to put certain colors into the can though. But we persevered, saying over and over again "this is a red top" or "you're holding a blue one." He does say "blue" from time to time because of "Blue's Clues", and he will correctly identify other colors sporadically. he was very pleased that the lids were circles and that there were colored circles on them. I only put colors on one side of the lid at first, but modified it later because he would flip them around or dump them out (so many of these activities come back to dumping everything out and putting it into other containers with Boogie!) so I thought it would be better to have the same color on the top and bottom so he could identify the correct color quickly when we ask. This might be more successful with shapes since he can correctly identify more of them, but I haven't gotten around to making that set yet.
We are going to do the shapes on baby food jar lids because we know more people with babies than we know people who drink frozen juice! Anything metal and circular would work just fine. And formula cans would work just as well as a coffee can.