Hi! I’m Jennifer and I blog over at Monkey See, Monkey Do! I usually do sewing projects but have ventured into the world of homeschooling this year with my 3 1/2 year old son.
My little guy isn’t very excited about doing crafts, but this was some sort of a craft we did together that he really did enjoy.
First of all, he’s very interested in what time it is. And what day it is. And what road we’re on. And he always knows what landmarks we’re near (church, home, library, dairy, gym, etc).
So one day, instead of telling him “We’ll turn this way,” I said, “We’re going to turn east”.
And he said, “What is east?”
I decided it was time to introduce a compass. After all, my sense of direction isn’t all that great but I figure I should cultivate his interest in directions and locations.
So I got out some masking tape, construction paper, and some cars for him to drive. I made some landmarks for him (illustrated with pictures) to mark important places around our small town. I chose the library, grocery store, fire station, hospital, church and playground, but obviously this can be customized to include whatever landmarks you think your child recognizes.
Then I had him park cars at the various establishments and then follow directions to go on the correct roads to reach other landmarks. We worked on which way each direction was (relying on recognizing N, E, S, W on the compass).
I had to adjust the map a bit after my husband came home and pointed out various landmarks were actually south east, not just south, but those were minor adjustments!
Obviously, this could be modified to teach the directions right and left as well. Now when we ride in the car, my little guy often asks if we’re traveling east!
Hope you enjoy trying this sort-of-crafty idea with your child.