We love yard sales! It's as simple as that! My husband, me and our 2 kids head out every Saturday morning browsing the local sales. Just recently I came across a yard sale that was selling a good amount of crafty items. Bags of buttons, ribbons, unpainted wooden pieces for holidays like pumpkins, hearts and Christmas trees. Among the goodies was a bag of gems for .25 cents! I knew for sure that I would be able to use the gems for a craft/activity so I grabbed them up!
We just did a beach theme sensory table, in which we also used gems to hide as treasure, and as I was watching my daughter play with the shells from that activity I got an idea. Here's how one .25 cent bag of gems turned into 4 different learning games:
Gem and Shell Memory game: (since their were so many gems in the bag we were able to play this memory game 3 different ways:)
Match same gem color and same gem shape
Match same gem color (but the shape can be different) this helped focus more on color identification
Match same gem shape (but the color can be different) this helped focus more on shape identification
Simply hide the gems under the shells and play a good old fashion game of memory!
Matching same shape and same color
What's Different game:
Line up the gems and make one gem different from the others and ask your child which is different
Start a pattern whether it be by color or shape and have your child complete the pattern
Largest to smallest or smallest to largest:
Simply have your child line up the gems from smallest to largest or largest to smallest
My daughter had so much fun playing these little games which really took no set up time at all!
Everyone loves finding a deal and I truly did with these gems! Not only was the price right but my daughter had fun playing (and learning!). As a bonus I was able to get 2 uses out of our bag of shells from the dollar store - once with our beach theme sensory activity and the other with our gem shell memory games! And I'm almost positive these pretty little gems will be used for a craft project at some point! Win, win, win!
One last thing....when I was a kid the way I remember playing the memory game was by using a deck of cards. Hopefully this post will show that you can use different items that you probably already have in your home to play fun games and learn at the same time! A little bit of imagination can go a long way!