You know I love tape. This roll and slide measuring game shared by Leslie is perfect for preschoolers! Toddlers will enjoy playing along, too.
It was 110 degrees out last weekend – definitely not a time to play outside. I could tell that my 2 and 4 year old were getting a little restless being cooped up in the house again. Their energy level (and volume) was rising fast.
My eyes darted around the room as I searched for something new to engage their eager minds and active bodies.
Television? Tempting, but no.
Books? Judging by the height of the pile on the floor, they’d been there done that.
Aha! My husband had left out the tape measure, an item my kids are always enthralled with.
Grabbing it, I suggested that we make up a measuring game. I didn’t know what would happen next, but they were instantly hooked.
I asked them to find a clear stretch of floor for our game, and they went right to work. We found the perfect place tucked away between the window and the carpet.
Now, what to measure?
The stretch of floor looked a lot like a race track, and I spotted a few trains and balls nearby. “Let’s do a toy race,” I suggested.
The kids were jumping with excitement before I even got the words out.
First, we grabbed some painter’s tape (affiliate link) and made a starting line.
Next, we collected toys for the race and tested how well they moved.
When my 4-year-old aptly noted that some of these rolled and some of them slid, we announced that this would be the “Roll, Slide, How Far Race.” The kids were overjoyed.
We lined up their chosen contestants at the starting line and made up the rules.
The toys would have to start at the starting line, and we would either slide them or roll them. Whichever toys went the furthest won the race.
Then, we got to work rolling and sliding, and we used the tape measure to measure just how far each went.
I showed them how to keep track of the results in a chart.
One by one, we tested how far a toy could roll or slide.
In the end, the toy train won the race. Everyone cheered.
The kids discovered that most of the rolling toys could go the furthest. This was a great way to introduce the kid-friendly version of topics like measurement, shape, force, and friction.
My 4-year-old liked this game so much that she announced that she loves measuring, and the two of them collected more things in the house to measure.
This little Roll, Slide, How Far Race won the hearts of my children (and me), and I hope that it does the same for you.
Test it out with your kiddos and see what you discover.
About Leslie Ralph
Leslie creates fun picture books and STEM activities for little girls with a lot of smarts at Ribbons & Robots. Step away from the pink aisle, and see how much FUN math and science can be with an all-girl cast of characters, engaging activities, and cool facts that are perfect for pre-k through early elementary.