- In the play kitchen - fruits / veggies
- In the kitchen - mix of cereals or pastas, plastic lids by shape / size
- From the "cuddling" bin - fur / no fur, size, color
- Cups, Blocks, Pegs, Rings - color, size
- Deck of Cards (not all 52) - red / black, Diamonds / Hearts / Spades / Clubs, numbers
- UNO Cards - colors, numbers
- Photographs - old / young, boy / girl, family members, friends
- Crayons - colors, length
- Laundry - socks, shirts / pants
- Outside - sticks / pine cones / leaves
Of course, there are also toys on the market known as shape sorters; the ones that I am thinking of are geared toward fitting a shape in the same shape/sized-opening. We have two different versions at my house. This a great way to introduce basic shapes, increase fine motor skills, and work on matching. However, I think the toddler brain - at some point - is ready for sorting by attribute as well.
I also love to use what I have around the house to make learning happen. The other day, I pulled out my cupcake tin and some foam shapes (left-over from a Mother's Day PD craft). I put one of each color foam flower in each opening and started handing flowers to my toddler. I just asked her, "Could you put this flower with one the same color?" It was great fun, and I see serious sorting potential with the cupcake tin.
All of this has me thinking about "open-ended" sorting. Typically, I choose objects because I know how they could (logically) be sorted, but I don't often/ever give my toddler the chance to come up with her own sort. Perhaps I should put aside my inner control freak and give this a try soon ... just to see more possibilities for SORTING.
What SORTING Tips do you have to share? Feel free to comment and let me/us know :)