The Alphabet Train

Hi fellow frazzled carers of small people! Knackering isn’t it?

I’m afraid I cannot change that. It just bloody is exhausting. But I have ideas…and lots of ’em –  for those days when you are all out!

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So a few of you might have spotted my post the other week where I purchased some of those foam mats with letters and numbers on (love a Facebook marketplace bargain). I know a few friends that have them so I wanted to do a little game with them. However if you don’t have them I saw a post online where a Mum cut up a yoga mat (“who has fucking time for Yoga anyway” she muttered wildly as she slashed away, thinking of her skinny, zen, past-self!) but more likely, if you have 26 bits of kitchen roll or paper to spare just write on those.

Firstly, I just started putting the mats in Alphabetic order. This sounds totally obvious but this in itself was a good game. Ewan took an interest so I asked him to help find the next letter and when he got stuck I gave him a choice of two. This technique is always helpful in getting a kid to try. They recognise it’s a 50/50 chance and so are more inclined to guess, which in itself is a useful skill.  Once he got bored of that, I finished the line. I then got several cuddly toys and put them at the ‘stations’ – various letters. Ewan’s job was to be the train and pick them up. Then he put them back at the stations again. I obviously also had to be a train or a carriage at various points and asked him which station each toy was at.

Now my little boy is train crazy, so this helped. But you don’t have to be a train! You can be a rocket picking up astronauts, a princess in a carriage picking up her royal subjects, a bin lorry picking up the rubbish, a horse picking up riders, a pirate finding treasure. Whatever your child is in to, make the game about that. Put them in the driving seat…Choo (yawn) Choooo!

P.s. Cheapest place to buy these mats online is eBay.

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