My 老大 (lǎodà / oldest child) is really into Peppa Pig these days because Peppa is a big sister like 老大 and also has a little brother! Today we were reading 踢足球 (tī zúqiú / playing soccer) together, a cute story about Peppa Pig who likes to play tennis but doesn’t have enough racquets to play with her friends. Peppa and her friends end up playing soccer instead – girls against boys! So I created this Readng Ball activity so that 老大 could practice reading in an interactive way!
To reinforce new words and practice reading, I borrowed a sensory ball from baby 老二 (lǎo èr / second child) and filled it with strips of colorful paper with random written sentences from the book. I included mostly familiar words to build confidence and didn’t put too many new words, otherwise it could be too overwhelming.
老大 had fun pulling out different sentences and reading out loud. Then she also shook and threw the ball to see which sentences would fall out!
I imagine this activity would be really fun in a classroom setting: a teacher would throw the ball at a student, and the student has to catch and read a sentence! A mix of the Socratic Method and exercise!
老大 and I then read the book together and looked for the sentences that she had found in the ball. She can’t quite read the whole book…well, neither can I for that matter. She was able to figure out many words from watching the DVD, but I had to look up several words in the dictionary. But had a great time READING OUTDOORS! We take full advantage of the beautiful weather in California!
Okay, okay, so I realize the likelihood that other people happen to have a baby sensory ball at home is pretty slim, but if you have an active kid who has trouble sitting still for reading, this is a really fun way to get the movement in that they need! Here are some similar balls on Amazon.com (affiliate links provided for convenience):
Later we returned the ball back to 老二! I refilled the reading ball, this time with various ribbons. My son had a blast pulling each ribbon out! I’ll definitely have to do this reading ball activity with my son when he’s older!
If you try this reading ball activity, let us know! Leave a comment and don’t forget to tag a photo #ChalkAcademy on Instagram.
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Happy learning, friends!