Saturday, April 2, 2011

Home made Flannel Board and Flannel Board Games

You can make a homemade flannel board very easily by getting a piece of sturdy cardboard and some flannel, you can buy flannel by the yard at a fabric store, or you can by it by the piece at a craft store and piece it together, either is fine. For your base board color, I suggest a light blue or black. A good size is 12 x 18 or 18 x 24 if you want it a little bigger. You can get creative and make a board that folds up to go with you to restaurants, Dr. offices, etc. Something to do while you are waiting places.

Glue the flannel to the cardboard using craft glue or a hot glue gun. You now have a background board.

You can use this to play games, teach concepts, letters, numbers, etc. You can buy pre-made flannel board cut outs from educational supply stores, (some craft stores like Hobby Lobby or Michaels sell some pieces too) but they are easy and fun to make yourself too.

A game we play at school that they children really enjoy is very simple: cut the same shape (like a circle) out of various colors of flannel, ( the basics are best, red, blue, yellow, green, brown, pink, purple, gray); and cut a small shape out of white. Place all the colored circles on the board and turn it away from your child and hide the small white circle behind on of the colors. Turn the board back around and let your child guess which color the circle is hiding behind. Then let your child hide it and you guess. Make a big deal out of it when they find the hidden piece.

We expand this game by making various shaped objects - honey pots- and a small bee to hide; airplanes and a small cloud to hide; umbrellas and a small raindrop to hide. It can be anything.

We also do this with flannel shapes, triangle, square, circle, rectangle, hexagon. Another variation is to put numbers on the flannel and your child tells you the number it is hiding behind.

Some other activities you can do with the flannel board.

You can get small flannel numbers and cut out a bunch of small circles and have your child pick a number and put that number of circles on the board. You can get flannel alphabet letters (upper and lower case) and make words, match upper and lower case, etc. Let them have a turn getting it ready for you to do too.

Learning concepts about size, location can also be done with the flannel board, small, medium and large, over, under, behind, in front of, next to are all important concepts for children to learn.

Cut pictures out of a magazine or coloring book, glue a piece of flannel to the back and they can stick to the board. Tell a story with the pictures, encourage your child to tell stories from it too. Start with one or two pictures and talk about them.

Many of these ideas will also work with a magnetic dry erase board, add magnets to the back of pictures, etc. You can also then write right on the board.

HAVE FUN wit these activities and your child will HAVE FUN LEARNING with you.

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