X Week!


We’re in our third week loosely following Letter of the Week, but X was a little bit different. Because so few words begin with X, we played around with great options ending in the letter. Though of course, I couldn’t skip alphabet-book favorites like x-ray or xylophone!


ToolboX: One of Travis’ favorite activities is to play at his toolbench, so this was a no-brainer. To add to the X-themed fun, I made our play this week purposefully about items we needed to fiX using the tools from his toolbox, leading to great narrated play.


As a bonus, our toy drill ran out of batteries – so we really needed to fiX it!


X-ray: Kids love doctor toys, and Travis has recently taken to acting out giving shots and medicine. This week, I encouraged him to focus on his little toy x-ray machine, which he liked holding up to his stuffed animals to see their “bones.” He had no real way to grasp the concept, having never had an x-ray, but he seemed intrigued by the idea of peeking inside somebody’s body!


Xylophone: This word is really more of a phonetic zee, but what the heck – pull out your xylophones and make some noise all week!


BoX: Here is where the possibilities are almost endless. I’ve posted about our play with boxes before, but we can always think of new boX games!  One big hit was saving up packaging so he could play a “recycling” game, sending the packages down the shoot just like mommy does!


When he tired of that, I looked over to see construction underwear for a very tall box tower!


A simple boX train (three boxes tied together with rope) was a great hit for bringing pals like Cow and Puppy across the floor. Travis loved when the animals tumbled out, and helped them back aboard, and returned to this toy all week long.


Then I remembered to pull out our good old Jack in the BoX! It had been so long that I think we were both surprised Travis could now wind through the entire song himself, delighting in every “pop!” up of Peter Rabbit.



For great motor skills practice, we then used a large box for him to be the Jack in the Box, popping up from a crouch.


MailboX: On the heels of boxes in general, we focused on the mailbox, not only making Travis one of his own, but then acting out many a game of letters to mail and deliver. See my post for more details!

After these games, here are a few other x-themed ideas that were sprinkled through our week:

Fine art: Letter of the Week’s suggestion to“decorate an X” seemed sort of mundane, so as we decorated I talked about eXcess – Travis was thrilled to use so much glitter and globby glue! We glued on elbow macaroni to complete the over-the-top eXtravaganza.


Food: Rather appropriately, the verb miX fit into our week, so what better thing to do than mix up a batch of cookies from boxed sugar cookie miX? Just in case that wasn’t enough, we froze a portion of the dough in order to roll and cut out some X-shaped cookies.


If that’s too complicated, you can always cross two pretzel sticks into an X-shape on your child’s tray, for a cute snack.


Books: We don’t have any foX toys, but we were able to talk about foxes with two great library books: Hattie and the Fox by Mem Fox, and Fox on the Loose by Matthew Porter. Travis adored both and requested them all week. We rounded out our X books with The Magic Toolbox by Mie Araki

Song: I played Travis the song SiX Little Ducks, but since he’s known the song for a long time, I don’t think he connected it to X Week.

Math: There are two concepts with a prominent X that we played with. The number siX of course, but the idea of counting items up to six was sort of lost on Travis. He’s more excited about counting up to twenty these days, so didn’t understand why I kept wanting him to pause at six!


More successful was the idea of what comes neXt? We played two great games that helped build the concept, with a tape road for cars and with numbered stars on the wall.

And on that note, we’re off to W week neXt!