The Best Preschool Development Activities

The preschool years are a time of incredible growth and development. These years (and all that happens during them) create the foundation for the important skills that shape a child's confidence as they enter kindergarten. Purposeful and fun activities are not only enjoyable for your kiddo, but they’re also crucial for cognitive, physical, and language development.


Physical Development Activities for Preschoolers

•   Outdoor Play with Art Supplies: Encourage physical development with outdoor art activities. Crayons, chalk, and washable eco-safe paints are kid-friendly ways to let your kiddo express their creativity on the sidewalk or on large sheets of paper. Art activities not only grow their creativity and color and shape recognition, but supports gross and fine motor skills, too.
•   Dressing Up for Creative Play: Playing dress-up is more than just play! Dressing up and using props helps your child explore different roles and move in new ways, like a doctor taking someone’s temperature, a chef serving up dinner, or a superhero flying to save the day. Dress-up activities support fine and gross motor skills while encouraging imagination and positive social interactions.
•   Building Blocks and Alphabetic Fridge Magnets:  Building blocks or alphabetic fridge magnets are the perfect toys to enhance hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness while introducing letters and numbers at the same time!
•  Puzzles for Problem-Solving: Puzzle play is a great way to boost cognitive and physical development at the same time. Age-appropriate puzzles will have large, easy-to-hold pieces that toddlers can move all on their own. As they move the pieces around, young children will practice their fine motor skills and problem-solving abilities.
•  Setting Up Sensory Play: Tap into the world of sensory play and set up a water-pouring activity for your preschooler. Research shows that sensory play builds nerve connections in the brain’s pathways, which lead to the child’s ability to complete more complex learning tasks. With differently sized containers, your child can pour water, get a little messy, and have fun while developing hand-eye coordination and fine motor control. Sensory play is also great for calming an anxious or frustrated child.
Training Your Little Chef: Age-appropriate cooking activities, such as stirring, pouring, assembling, or minimal chopping, can be a great way to practice life skills. Have your preschool join you in the kitchen and perform age-appropriate tasks, like cutting vegetables with a kid-safe knife, sprinkling cheese on a homemade pizza, or mixing a salad. Cooking introduces kids to basic kitchen skills while improving hand-eye coordination and fine and gross motor skills.  
•  Reading with Physical Activity: Can reading really help physical development? Absolutely – when you add physical movements to your reading routine! Using props like puppets or acting out parts of the story are great ways to promote physical activity alongside language comprehension.


Preschool Language Development Activities

•   Reading Aloud Together: Reading aloud is a basic activity that supports language development. Choose a variety of books, including picture books with vibrant colors and simple narratives. Make reading a daily ritual to instill a love for stories and enhance vocabulary. (Plus, reading time is a great time to get in snuggle time!) Want to inspire a love of reading? Get started today.
•  Sensory-Focused Reading Activities:  Include sensory elements into reading by exploring interactive books, like pop-ups or scratch-and-sniff stories. Sensory engagement can capture your child’s attention while supporting language acquisition and development through an engaging, multisensory experience.
•  Storytelling with Art Supplies:  Stories + art = learning disguised as fun! When you combine storytelling with art supplies you get a creative language development activity. Children can draw or paint scenes from a story they've heard, building their imagination and developing their ability to express creative ideas verbally.
• Rhyme Time and Sing-Alongs:Singing nursery rhymes enhances sound recognition, rhythm, and language development. Children’s music often rhymes, which helps kids explore sounds and patterns in language.
•  Letter and Number Recognition Games: Alphabet or number flashcards, matching games, or magnetic letters on the fridge are great ways to letter and number recognition while encouraging verbal expression with little ones.
Outdoor Language Exploration: Talking your way through nature is a great way to build language development with your child. When you identify objects through a scavenger hunt, like plants and animals, and describe your surroundings together, talking with your preschooler as you experience the outdoors together can give you a change of scenery while introducing new vocabulary and building language patterns.
• Regular Conversations and Narration: We saved the easiest for last! Have regular conversations with your child. Explain what you’re doing, narrate daily activities, ask open-ended questions, and encourage them to express themselves verbally in response. Conversations are powerful tools for language development!


Through a balance of physical and language development activities, preschoolers build essential skills while developing a lifelong love for learning. From building with blocks and pouring water to engaging in cooking adventures and diving into the world of books, these activities create an environment where curiosity thrives, and little minds grow! Check out the Preschool Box from Subscription Box Kids for monthly preschool activities that encourage learning, reading, and creativity.

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