What a fun guest post I have to share with you today for kids to learn to make connect the dots on their own! Mihaela from Best Toys 4 Toddlers is here with a simple tracing tutorial!
For a few days my daughter has been doing some coloring and activity sheets in one of her activity books and came up with a question:
Mom, how do they make dot to dots?
So I promised her to find time over the weekend and show her how exactly is this done.
Truth to be told, I needed some time to think it over and figure out the simplest way to show her how dot to dot worksheet can be created.
As the weekend came, a plan was formed in my head and we were ready to give this activity a try. I prepared a bunch of plain white papers, a few markers and pencils.
I would love to have had a light table for this activity but since we don’t, we used old fashion way, the way I was taught how to trace stuff when I was a kid. (And this activity was a bit like a voyage back in time!) So, we used a window and did this in the daylight!
Connect the dots can go beyond paper and pencil! Check out these 11 connect the dot activities that ditch the traditional worksheets!
We started with the simplest shape possible – triangle.
I had hand-drawn a triangle, used some washi tape to secure paper on window and shown her how to place another piece of paper over it. Now we could see the triangle through the 2nd paper.
I showed her where to mark dots, on top of each angle.
When done, she added numbers to each of the dots (1 – 3 for three dots).
As she tried to connect the dots, she realized that she can’t close the dots to form a triangle, she was missing number 4 on her drawing. As soon as it was added, she completed the form.
Next we tried with square.
How to have kids make connect the dots:
- Handdrawn square
- Paper over
- Add dots
- Number dots from 1 – 5 (yes, 5 dots are needed to close the shape, 4 dots and numbers 1 and 5 sharing a dot)
Now we were ready for something a bit more complicated.
How many dots are needed to draw a circle?
We started with only 4, one for each of the bellies on the circle.When paper was removed and she connected the dots, she realized she didn’t get a circle, she got diamond!
Next try, we added 4 dots (up, down, left, right) and then one more in between each of the dots, for a total of 8 dots. When connected, it looked a bit more like a circle but still could use some more dots!
So, in next try we used 12 dots – up, down, left, right + 2 in between of each. Now this looked much more like a circle. (Shhh, connecting with thick marker helps this too!)
Looking for activities to learn shapes? Try these 10 for toddlers.
Next step was to show her how to draw a simple picture and create a dot-to-dot sheet from it.
I picked to draw a simple key and make a connect the dots from it.
She connected the dots as shown on the picture.
Then she insisted to make me a surprise dot-to-dot sheet so I would have to guess what it was while connecting the dots. (Hey, it’s a boot!)
Hm, there seem to be a problem with number 6, she writes mirrored image.
At this moment, little one started yelling that she wants to go out to play in the park and we had to close down with this activity for a day. By the time we were back, it was already too dark to use window for tracing…
So, what we learned? We learned that everything can be created using dots. And lines. Curved lines need more dots and closer to each other.
We practiced writing numbers. We practiced hand writing. We practiced keeping focus and noticed details.
But, hey! Don’t tell that to my daughter! She makes faces each time when I invite her to learn something. So, as far as she’s concerned, WE WERE JUST DRAWING!
Mihaela runs Best Toys 4 Toddlers blog and loves to come up with new ideas how to use old toys her 2 daughters keep leaving on the floor to slip over. She loves them despite the fact that they call her mommy few hundred times a day, and it makes her nuts. Right now she’s thinking how to get her 7 year old to make toys for 2 year old as an idea to bring them closer together. In mean time, you can find her on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest sharing playful learning ideas for toddlers and preschoolers.