By Vega Schools

Most of the top Gurgaon schools focus on building skills such as logical reasoning, hand and eye coordination, creativity in playing, utilising available resources, ability to understand simple instructions and designs, and so on.

When my son, Sam was 2-3 years old, schools were being held online and I wanted to inculcate essential academic skills so that he wouldn’t face much problems in adjusting in an offline school environment. These activities were not directly linked to a school syllabus but turned out to be helpful in developing essential skills required to perform well academically.

We will see that these activities really require minimum resources but still can provide a lot of fun and engagement to little ones during summer vacations.

1. Pattern recognition, grouping and sorting  

This activity develops hand and eye coordination and logical reasoning by identifying colour-coded patterns. There are many printable patterns available online. I used ones with coloured popsicle sticks. I just placed a series of printed patterns on the floor and allowed my son to copy those patterns on plain sheets of paper or on the floor directly. I did this in increasing order of difficulty, starting with patterns containing 2-3 sticks and moving to more difficult ones as he became increasingly efficient in recognising them. Here are a few websites I found popsicle patterns printables on:

We can add this activity to our child’s busy bag to keep her engaged during travel and outings. The popsicle sticks can also be substituted with any other loose things you may have handy: stones and pebbles, leaves, pom-pom balls, crayons, pens, etc. We can also create an instant activity by asking your child to group objects by colour. I once marked the floor using water colours and Sam sorted his toys in different colours.

2. Numeracy skills

I had scraps of coloured paper leftover from an art project and I found this use for them.We can see here that Sam was still struggling with pencil control so I practised basic skills of writing on dotted numbers, counting using dots, counting using leaves.

Some other activities could be counting through finger painting and counting and placing objects inside circles. I made Sam pick pom-pom balls using pincers to develop his fine motor skills too.

3. Literacy skills

Phonics is fun and easy to understand when aided with engaging activities. Sam likes activities that include sorting, pasting or painting. The pictures here are activities that help with:

Recognition of phonics and letters

Matching sounds with pictures.

Blending CVC words.

Building fine motor skills through art and craft

I thought that displaying the child’s work on a wall was very helpful because it helps in recalling the concepts learnt and also motivates him to create more. Sam would often make something for the wall and ask me to put it up. A visible phonics wall also helps in teaching CVC words, such as SAT.

Fun with nature

Sam was lucky to be in a farm when other outdoor options were closed down. I not only let him play in the garden but also in piles of sand and muddy puddles. Some benefits of nature for children are:

  • It improves physical health
  • Ensures mental health
  • Increases knowledge of natural phenomena and processes
  • Develops compassion and empathy
  • Relieves stress
  • Enhances power of observation
  • Teaches responsibility

All children, especially in Pre primary, nursery school, kindergarten and across the primary school, can benefit from these fun activities.

A child studying at a top school in Gurgaon can especially gain since these activities will resemble the actirivies being conducted at the school. These activities will also make the transaction from vacation to school easier.

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