Easter Activities for Toddlers with (or without) Down Syndrome

Hi! It’s me again. 🙂 Can you believe that Easter is right around the corner! To keep my mind off all the COVID-19 news, I’ve been busy preparing Junior’s activities for the month of April. There are so many fun, educational activites you can do with Easter eggs! I’m posting again so soon because I hope you find some ideas here to help keep little hands and minds busy during this time of quarantine:

Our goals this month are: to learn the color yellow, to learn “behind” and the concept of “not”, and to understand quantity up to two or three. Your goals will probably be different, but you can adapt some of these to suit your toddler’s needs.

Learn the Color Yellow

  • Have a basket of yellow items. As your child pulls out each item, say “This ________ is yellow.”
  • Color a picture of a sun, bus, or chick with yellow crayons
  • Sing “Five Little Ducks” and change it to “Five Yellow Ducks”, use pictures of yellow ducks
  • Look at picture cards of yellow items and name them: daffodil, chick, duck, banana, lemon, butterfly, yellow raincoat, yellow rain boots, sun, bus, etc.
  • After 2 weeks, review green. Sort green and yellow objects, cards, or pom poms
  • Give your child yellow and green Easter eggs. Sort them by color.

Color matching:

  • Have your child color match printed or plastic Easter eggs. If your child is overwhelmed by too many colors, start with only two. You can order unfinished wooden eggs and cups at Amazon and make matching eggs and cups.

Learn “Behind”

  • Have an  Easter egg hunt, placing the eggs behind the couch, behind your back, behind a tree, etc. Help your toddler find  the eggs, saying, “It’s behind the _________” . 
  • Play hide and seek. Hide behind a piece of furniture and say, “I’m behind the __________!”
  • Line up cars or stuffed animals. Put one behind the other.
  • After 2 weeks, review over/under and add that to Hide and Seek games and Easter egg hunts.

Learn “Not”

  • Look at photo albums. Point to a picture and say, “Is this Mommy? No, it’s not Mommy, it’s ______________. “
  • Look at pictures of animals. Point to a horse and say, “Is this a cow?” Prompt/help your child to say “No, not horse.” You ask, “What is it?” 
  • Talk while doing the laundry. Hold up an article of clothing and say, “Is this Daddy’s?” Help child answer, “Not, not Daddy’s.”
  • Lay out three yellow picture cards and one card that is not yellow. Ask, “Which one is not yellow?”

Quantity up to 2 or 3

  • Count up to five by rote. Emphasize the /f/ in four and five.
  • Do one-to-one correspondence games with plastic/wooden eggs and an egg carton. To make it more interesting, make egg shakers by filling the plastic eggs with rice, beans, pasta, etc. Seal them shut with a glue gun. Junior likes to shake the eggs as hard as he can. Then help your child put one egg in each egg cup.
  • When your child is having a snack, ask “How many _______ do you want? One or two?”
  • Put 1, 2, or 3 cheerios inside plastic eggs. Hide the eggs. Help your child find them, open them, and count the cheerios. (Warning: Junior prefers to fling the cheerios across the room…. maybe I need to put a tastier treat inside!)
  • Make cards with 1, 2, or 3 on them. (Use index cards or stiff felt).  Make 3 smaller cards: 1 card with 1 sticker, another card with 2 stickers, another card with 3 stickers. Help your child count the stickers on the cards and place them below or on top of the correct number card.

Fine Motor Skills:

  • Play with yellow play dough. Show your child how to squish, poke, and roll the dough between his hands. Make little balls of play dough.  Stick one rigatoni into each little ball. 
  • Stick a straw into a mound of play dough. Let you child stack the rigatonis onto the straw. 
  • Pour beans from one measuring cup into another. Talk about dumping, pouring, and taking turns. Junior loves when I pour the beans from way up high. Cleaning up the spilled beans is a great fine motor activity.
  • Teach you child to unfold napkins and smooth them out. Then help him to fold and stack them. When I first introduced this activity, I was surprised at how interested he was. By the way, I was too lazy to hem the napkins… This turned out to be a good thing because tiny strands of thread end up on Junior’s clothes which he then tries to pick off — more fine motor exercise!
  • Dress a wooden magnetic doll. Name the clothes and talk about on/off. (I only give Junior one outfit at a time since too many pieces overwhelms him.)
  • Prepare a basket of  Easter eggs. Put surprise items inside. Practice opening the eggs and closing them. Or, play with nesting easter eggs. Talk about what’s inside the egg.
  • Play with foam puzzles: vehicles and letters/numbers. Name the letters and shapes as you play. Junior learned all the letters just by playing with the letter puzzle.
  • Play with squishy window paint: Pour two colors of paint into a giant ziplock bag. Seal it and tape it onto a patio door or a low window. Help your child “paint” with his/her finger. Show him how to draw lines down and across and how to make circles. So much fun!

Pretend Play:

  • Model and encourage pretend play with toy food and cookware. Junior enjoys “cutting” the vegetables and pretending to stir them. He also pretends to feed a puppet.

And this one is so much fun:

Make an egg shooter! Get a roll of wrapping paper. Put one end on the couch and the other end on a low (child-size) chair. Give your child a basket of eggs (the egg shakers work well because they are filled), and have your child stick them down the roll. Junior’s siblings attached the roll to a big box, and made a door for him at the back of the box. He LOVES it! We practice naming the colors of the eggs before he puts each one down the shoot. When all the eggs are done, he counts the eggs as he collects them and put thems back in the basket. (He loves to count.)

Songs:

Junior loves action songs. They’re such a great way to practice speech. By now he has quite the repertoire of songs, but this month we are focussing on:

  • The Wheels on the Bus
  • Five Little Ducks (change words to Five Yellow Ducks)

Books:

But not the Hippopotamus, Sandra Boynton

Goodnight Moon, Margaret Wise Brown

The Napping House, Audrey Wood

We’re Going on an Egg Hunt, Laura Hughes

Home for a Bunny, Margaret Wise Brown

Little One, God Loves You, Amy Warren

That’s all for now! Hope you find some fun and helpul ideas. What Easter activities do your toddlers enjoy?

A happy and blessed Easter to you and your family!

4 thoughts on “Easter Activities for Toddlers with (or without) Down Syndrome

    1. Hi Caydee! Sorry it took me this long to get back to you… I have 6 kids so it takes me a while to get around to comments. Anyways, you seem like a super nice kid. But please, please, please, for your own safety, do not leave your personal information on comments… such as your full name and where you live. There are lots of bad people out there in the internet who want to hurt kids through the internet. This is why I am going to delete your previous comments … for your safety.

      I know you are bored… these are tough times for everyone. If you make a schedule for yourself everyday, you will find the time will go much faster. Spend time each day doing the following: homework, reading, your artwork, helping around the house, playing board games with your siblings, and going outside to practice your soccer skills. This is a great time to develop some new interests and hobbies. Maybe you can ask your parents to order you some craft kits and learn to cook. Try to stay off the internet, ok? And don’t make online friends with people you don’t personally know. That is dangerous. Just call your friends or grandparents instead.

      Like

      1. Hello that hurt but thank you for protecting me .Just a heads up now I am never writing in word press again.

        Like

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