Begin with handing your child the letters of their name in order for them to stacking on top of each other. Model saying each letter out loud as you stack them up.
See if you can encourage your child to stack the Legos as well; a silly way to encourage participation is to have a countdown and then blast your rocket ship up into space!
If successful so far, start again but this time say the next letter and see if they can identify it from 2 or 3 options.
If they are successful so far try offering them all of the letters in their name at the same time and see if they can put them in order themselves!
If your child is ready for more of a challenge try adding more letters to the mix and building rocket ship “word families”. These are usually 3 or 4 letter rhyming words, such as words that end in -at, -an, or -ad.
Initiate a game of “Blastoff” with your child, including a 10-second countdown and being thrown up then “crashed” into a safe surface. If your child is usually nervous about activities like this try holding them in your arms as you jump up and down or even try crashing together!
If your child is laughing and enjoying the activity, see if you can pause or slow down the interaction to encourage them to reinitiate the game. In the beginning, honor any attempts to communicate they want to continue the game and build off of that!
See if you can encourage your child to talk about “where” you should blast off too – see this week’s movement lesson for a link to Laurie Berkner’s Rocket Ship Run, which is a fun way to introduce this idea!
If your child is ready to increase the challenge see if they will engage in problem solving with “playful obstructions”. Pretend your rocket ship has run out of gas, or you are too sad to fly the rocket ship today, and see if your child can come up with realistic ways to “fix” the problem and restart the activity!
Squeezing out the glue and shaving cream promotes hand strengthening and scooping and dumping the flour is a wonderful opportunity for practicing their motor planning and bilateral coordination! Encourage your child to participate in portioning and mixing these 3 ingredients together to create a puffy space paint.
Join your child in using the paintbrushes, or even their hands, in decorating their night skies with some beautiful puffy clouds.
Try modeling drawing straight lines and circles in the clouds and encourage your child to do the same!
Practice creating more challenging shapes such as squares and plus signs; these are still important precursors to handwriting!
See if your child can recognize letters or even simple sight words drawn in the clouds.
If your child seems ready to expand even further, practice painting their name in uppercase letters. Rather than the popular “connect the dot” style tracing, instead use a light colored crayon for a more visually supportive solid line to trace.
Activity: Flying in Space
Click Here for Laurie Berkner’s “Rocket Ship Run” – a great addition to this activity!
The goal of this activity is to see if your child can lay on their stomach and hold their head, arms, and legs off the ground. Try modeling the position yourself to show them what you are asking!
If you can, orient yourself so you are face to face with each other to increase opportunities to interact with each other during the activity.
Next, see if your little astronaut can coordinate both sides of their body and do “astronaut swimming” with you!
If your child seems ready for more you can up the challenge by rolling ball/balloon “planets” to your child for them to “blast” away! Try and aim for both sides of their body to get both of their hands active in the activity.
Want to add a cognitive challenge to the task? Make them “unlock” the planet by guessing the color/shape/number you are thinking of in your head. Practicing “password” games such as this is a fun way to encourage your child to build their categorical thinking – just don’t make them guess too many times that they lose interest!
Activity: Homemade Astronaut Food
Fruit/vegetable smoothie ingredients
Paper cups or ziplock bags (disposable or reusable are available in store or on Amazon!)
Wash hands, prepare fruit and vegetable ingredients for blending, prepare the popsicle molds or plastic bags to hold the smoothie ingredients.
Prepare recipe found here
Example: 2 cups favorite fruit, 2 Tablespoons honey or yogurt. Refrigerate or freeze popsicles for at least 4 hours, then consume! Pack your astronaut bags full of astronaut food and prepare to go into space!
TIP: encourage your child to measure and prepare astronaut food ingredients.
Activity: Pete the Cat Out of This World By James Dean
Carry over last week’s theme to this week, and enjoy reading about Pete the Cat and his adventures at space camp! After, work on receptive language skills of following directions, prepositions, and identification of colors, shapes and sizes by creating your own outer space scene with crafting materials!
Pete the Cat Out of this World
The goal of this activity is to focus on receptive language skills, including following directions, identifying colors, sizes, and shapes, and identifying prepositions. Creating your own outer space scene with the listed crafting materials. Tell your child which size/color to make the stars or planets, and where to put them on your scene.
Work on multistep directions (2-3 steps depending on your child’s ability!) during this activity (e.g., put sun next to the star, and the planet at the top).
Include more than one qualitative concept during your direction to increase task complexity (e.g., Color a big, blue, round planet).
Take turns on who is the direction giver to target your child’s expressive language skills.
Work on understanding of negation (E.g., Put all the planets that are not red on the picture).