Catch That Sound

Catch That Sound (4)

Here’s a game that combines reading and phonics skills with gross motor skills, but your kids will just think they’re having a blast! In other words: the perfect way to spend a summer morning.

I pulled out the beach ball, which already had Travis excited, and explained the rules.

Pick a letter, and the person throwing the ball has to say a word that begins with that letter before each toss.

Catch That Sound (1)

Some of these were easy. B lent itself to books, babies, balls, and bees rapidly. Others made him stop and think between each throw. Eagle was his first confident answer for E, but then he was stuck until I prompted some words with the short-E vowel sound like elephant.

Catch That Sound (2)

Travis also thought it was fun to roll the ball to little sister after saying each word, a great way to see the siblings play together.

Catch That Sound (3)

See which letter your kids can get the most for! And with every throw, they will be honing those gross motor catching and throwing skills, too. We might just have to play this one on the beach, next time!

Catch That Sound (5)

Balancing on a Ball

Balance Ball (4)

The last time I put Veronika on a beach ball, she was only about three months old, and the goal was to strengthen her core muscles.

Today’s time on the ball was for a slightly different purpose, more about learning where her body is in space.

Say what? This is a funny concept for grown-ups; of course you know where your hands and feet and limbs are! But it’s all new to babies, and at six months old, they still have to look at their hands to know where those hands are and where to put them. Moving around on a ball will help strengthen spacial awareness. And of course the sooner baby knows where his or her hands are, the sooner he or she can reach out to grab things like toys or oh, all those yummy bites of food they’re old enough for now!

Today’s activity was simple then. I put Veronika on a ball, holding her firmly around the middle, and rocked her back and forth.

Balance Ball (1)

And side to side.

Balance Ball (3)

She seemed a little surprised at times, but soon warmed up with big smiles.

Balance Ball (2)

If you don’t have a beach ball, try a yoga stability ball, or even a big sibling’s toy ball hopper.