Easy and fun Spatial Awareness Grid that your child will love
If a baby sees their favorite toy from a distance or a toddler sees a cartoon on TV, they may extend their hand to touch it. Despite being so obviously far away, why do they think they can reach it?
This is because a child takes time to develop their spatial awareness.
Spatial Awareness is an internal compass that tells us the distance, direction, and location of things around us in relation to ourselves and each other. This basic skill is at the heart of learning and performing countless tasks, such as knowing that a cup is on a table and not under it or that a toy is 5 feet away and not at an arm's length.
While this is a skill that naturally develops over time, it can be a slower process for kids cooped at home, spending hours in front of screens. But there are some simple ways to strengthen your little one's spatial awareness, and this week’s co create activity is one such fun game!
Benefits of the Spatial Awareness Grid
This game is called the Spatial Awareness Grid and offers your child numerous benefits. Some of these include:
1. Concentration - Recreating a pattern requires intense focus. This will sharpen your child’s ability to concentrate for longer periods of time.
2. Spatial awareness - Understanding where the dots in each pattern are and correctly replicating it will develop their perception of distance and location.
3. Colours recognition - Identifying and distinguishing the colors on the cards will help improve their color recognition.
4. Fine motor skills - Picking up and moving the small pieces as they play will hone their dexterity and fine motor skills.
5. Hand-eye coordination - Moving the pieces and placing them in the right spot on the grid will sharpen your child’s hand-eye coordination.
6. Problem solving skills - Figuring out the design of a particular pattern and how they can recreate it will hone their problem solving skills.
7. Visual discrimination - Being able to tell apart the colors and the different patterns will help your child build their visual discrimination skills.
8. Language development - From the names of colors to words such as left, right, and center, your child’s vocabulary and communication skills will also improve as they play this game.
Creating the Spatial Awareness Grid
This activity can be enjoyed by children between 2.5 to 5 years.
1. A piece of cardboard
2. A4 sheets
3. A cardboard cutter/scissors
4. Sketch pens
How to create the grid:
1. Take the piece of cardboard and cut it into 2 squares of the same size.
2. Cut one of the squares further into 9 equal squares.
3. Draw a circle on each of the 9 pieces and use different colored sketch pens to fill them in.
4. Draw a 3X3 grid on the uncut cardboard square.
5. For the pattern cards - Cut the A4 sheets into a few squares and draw a 3X3 grid on each. Cut out as many squares as the number of pattern cards you want.
6. In each of the squares, draw and fill in different colored circles in random grid spaces.
Playing with the Spatial Awareness Grid
The aim of the game is to recreate the patterns on the cards on the big grid.
You can start by asking your child to pick a pattern card. Encourage them to identify the colours on it. Once they have named all the colors, ask them if they can find cardboard pieces with the same colors on them and place the pieces on the grid to replicate the pattern card.
For older children, you can increase the difficulty level. Instead of colorful circles, write the names or simply the first alphabets of the colors on the pattern cards (example: R for red, O for orange) and let them decode the colours based on it. Once your child is familiar with the game, feel free to get even more creative with your pattern cards!
We hope you’ve enjoyed this activity. If you would like to share your experience playing with this grid, tag us at #CoCreatewithshumee. Stay home and stay safe!
Anushikha Bansal is a DIY blogger and the co-creator of #noprepkidsactivity. You can follow her @toddler_ed on Instagram.