Day 13 Montessori-inspired Christmas Holiday Activity

Puzzles are great for a child’s mind and cognitive development. They provide a key opportunity to the child to manipulate the world around him. Day 12 activity is a simple DIY block puzzle based on Christmas nativity story characters. You can refer to the nativity story we covered on Day 10 <http://www.babychakra.com/learn/1618-christmas-series-day-10-nativity-story> of the Christmas series.

Building blocks are quite a common toy, however, did you know there are many more ways to play with those blocks than just build structures with them? Here’s a new way to use those blocks to create an interesting avatar of nativity story characters. Read HERE for more details on why puzzles are good for a child’s development.

 

AGE GROUP – 1.5 year onwards

 

MATERIALS NEEDED

  • Print out (Page 5, 6, and 7) of this printable.
  • Any building blocks, wooden or plastic, anything would do. I used Fisherprice Megabloks.
  • Scissors
  • Scotch tape

  

TIME REQUIRED FOR ACTIVITY PREPARATION – 20 Minutes

 

HOW & WHAT TO DO

  • Cut out individual characters of the nativity story. Number of characters totally depend on you. I cut 7 main characters.
  • By measuring the size of the blocks & the character cutouts, decide how many parts you would need to cut a character so that it can fit nicely on a stacked tower of your blocks. For me, 2 megabloks, one over the other were sufficient to cover 1 character.
  • Accordingly cut the individual characters according to your blocks’ size. For me, I cut the characters into half, each half fit nicely in 1 megablock piece.
  • Paste the paper pieces onto the blocks using a transparent scotch tape. And tada, your puzzle is ready!
  • Stack the blocks to form individual characters and present it to your child.
  • Talk about the Nativity story and the characters.
  • Demonstrate how to join the pieces and form a figure and then let the child do it on its own
  • Initially, give pieces of one or two figures only to avoid overwhelming the child

 

SKILLS DEVELOPED

  • Logic and problem solving
  • Fine motor skills
  • Hand eye coordination
  • Culture & Tradition

 

CAN SOME MATERIALS BE REPLACED?

  • If you do not have the printout of this printable, you can hand draw the outlines of these nativity story characters.

 

HOW TO TWEAK FOR YOUNGER KIDS

  • Young kids might not be able to fit the puzzle but put the blocks on top of each other. Let them be. It will be a nice exposure to them even if they cannot complete the puzzle. Talk about the characters & story in general for stimulation of their senses. You can surely use this next year with your kid when s/he is older and able to complete it.

 

HOW TO TWEAK FOR OLDER KIDS

  • You can mix the pieces of many characters to make it challenging for an older child
  • To increase the level of difficulty a little more, mix plain simple blocks (without any character pasted over them). Let the child search for the blocks with characters pasted on it & then find a match from that bunch of blocks.

 

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