If you would like to enhance your toddler's development before sending him or her to preschool or kindergarten, toddler workbooks can provide assistance. Workbooks for this age group are often just as fun as they are educational, which means your child may cheer each time you take out one of his or her workbooks.
Topics for Toddler Workbooks
For very young children, it is best to focus on recognition skills rather than production skills. Activities often are in the format of "which one of these is not like the other" and other types of distinctions. Common topics for toddlers include the following:
- Less than/more than
In choosing topics for your child, remember to take his or her interests into account. If your child is not enjoying reading yet, it is better not to go for the letters and sounds workbooks. Only once your child is excited about a topic is it a good idea to try to learn more about it. If you are not sure if your child is interested in a given topic, take out the workbook on that topic and start the first page. If your child is pointing enthusiastically and shouting with recognition, continue using it. If your child seems bored or angry, put the workbook away and save it for when your toddler is a little older.
Workbooks usually have an age recommendation on them, but you can be fairly flexible with these recommendations. While it would never be a good idea to give a workbook for a 10 year old to a four year old, your two year old may do very well with a workbook labeled for children over the age of three. Use your judgment in choosing toddler workbooks; you know how much patience and attention span your child has. What you may not know is that your child's academic skills are more developed than you think. Don't be afraid to start teaching your toddler the alphabet. Not only will your child have fun singing the alphabet and recognizing letters in his or her favorite books, but your child will also have a head start when beginning kindergarten.
Popular Workbook Series
When out shopping at local bookstores, you may find a few toddler workbooks in the children's education section of the store. In addition, you can look for these favorite series online and have them delivered right to your door. All of the following series are available from Amazon.com.
One of the most extensive collections of workbooks for toddlers is published by Kumon Publishers. These books are specifically designed to target math and reading skills, but there are also plenty of general and motor skills addressed in the series, especially among the workbooks intended for the lower end of the target age spectrum (ages two to four years). Be sure to check the age recommendations because some of the workbooks will be far beyond the skills of toddlers, such as the addition and subtraction workbooks.
Who better to teach academic skills to toddlers than Sesame Street characters? Featuring your toddler's favorite furry friends, these workbooks not only teach valuable skills, but are also often a big hit with young children. Two specific Sesame Street workbooks series are particularly loved by toddlers and their parents alike.
- The Toddler Time workbooks each focus on a topic that toddlers will love exploring, such as animals and seasons.
- Wipe Off workbooks are really handy because toddlers need to practice things several times before they understand the concept. These wipe-off workbooks from Sesame Street teach valuable skills like shapes and numbers and will last a long time because each and every page can be reused.
Get Ready Workbooks
The concept behind these workbooks is to prepare your toddler for when he or she first goes to school. While some of the titles in the series are better for older children (from age four and a half), some of the topics are perfect for toddler workbooks, such as shapes, and recognizing numbers and letters.
Joy of Learning
It is never too young to start developing academic skills. Do remember though that your child will learn much more if he or she is having fun than if doing toddler workbooks is something akin to pulling teeth. If your child enjoys workbook pages as a fun activity, provide plenty of paper and crayon learning opportunities. If, however, your child can't seem to sit still for workbooks, try to teach important concepts through songs, games like Simon Says (Simon Says touch the closest thing to you that is red/the closest thing to you that is a circle) or physical games (count hops or leaps instead of counting blocks). Having fun learning is the best way to learn, whether it includes workbooks or not.