We are well into our transitions from summer to fall. New school routines have settled in, and hopefully they are working out well for your family. Brand new preschoolers are real pros now, and even parents may have adopted new routines after a busy summer. For our really little ones, though, days can run together and life might be getting a little uninteresting. At this point, we parents start looking for more ideas to keep our littlest ones busy at home. Thankfully, they are easy to please, so let’s look at three fun things to teach your little ones in October.
Start with classic fall
We can start with the most obvious – fall symbols and signs. As adults, the basic fall themes can get old, but our young children love the standard, stereotypical leaf and pumpkin activities. Trace leaves on construction paper, draw and decorate pumpkins, and read all the fall books. And while you have fun with these standard things, add in some fall signs. Using sign language speeds up your child’s verbal development. It also decreases children’s frustration in trying to express feelings and needs before they can verbally express them. So take a look at the Signing Time Dictionary, and help your child learn the signs for autumn, leaf, and tree. There’s an entire nature section to explore for more signs that could go along with your fall activities.
Learn about the seasons
While you’re learning about the wonders of fall, you could teach your child about the changing of seasons. Talk about the differences between the seasons. Get out the paints or crayons and color four different trees to show the tree in each season.
If you live where there isn’t much variation in the seasons, then you could try to work on the names of the months that make up the seasons. December, January, and February are winter months. Spring happens in March, April, and May. We enjoy summer in June, July, and August. Then we have fall in September, October, and November.
If you have kids who love science, you can go further and show them how the earth tilts toward the sun at one point in its orbit, and then tilts away from the sun at the other end of its orbit. You could use a tennis ball and a flashlight, or go all out with a fun science kit. This is a really fun thing to teach your little ones!
While you’re learning about the seasons, you can watch My Favorite Season from our Signing Time Classic Collection. And if you’re an educator, check out our Signing Time K-3 Classroom Curriculum – Unit 10, Seasons.
Brush up on saying “Thank you”
Another fun thing to teach your little ones in October is manners, especially their frequency in saying “thank you.” At the end of October, parents will be whispering, “Say ‘thank you’!” to children trick-or-treating at doors all over. It’s a good idea to start working on that now. Who knows? Maybe it will stick if we work on it for the entire month. See if you can make a game of it. Try exaggerating your own thank yous, and invite your children to do the same. Let’s see how big we can make our thank yous!
Back to the Signing Time Dictionary, we have a section on Manners where you can find signs to help your littlest ones learn some basic manners. But also, knowing signs for manners is a great tool for us as parents. I use the sign for thank you to remind my kids to say it!
Spend some time on these fun things to teach your little ones this October! And don’t forget to check out our fun, educational programming on My Signing Time. Use the shows and the dictionary resources together to help your children learn signs to help them communicate. You can try My Signing Time with a free 14-day trial right here!