Matching games are simple and fun for preschoolers and toddlers. One of our favorite ways to practice matching is by using little items from around the house to make matching objects puzzles.
Visual discrimination is an important skill for kids as they are learning to read. In order to distinguish between each alphabet letter, kids need to be able to notice small differences in the letters. Matching games are great to help kids work on visual discrimination.
In this sticky wall game we used some of our favorite stickers to help us work on matching!
Materials needed: stickers (in pairs), small pieces of paper (I used my circle punch to cut out about 20 circles out of cardstock), painters tape, contact paper
Ahead of time my daughter and I used my circle punch to cut out about 20 circles from cardstock. If you want the circles to last longer, laminate the paper first before you cut out the circles.
Then I had her add stickers to each circle to create 10 sets of matching cards.
Once all of the circles had stickers on them we were ready to play!
I created a sticky wall by sticking contact paper to the wall (sticky side out) and then taping it in place with painters tape.
Then I mixed up the circles and put them on the floor in front of the sticky wall.
Next I just encouraged my daughter to find her favorite matches and stick them to the wall!
This activity prompted a lot of communication as we talked about each sticker and the different details we saw. We tried to use a variety of pictures with different colors and shapes so that there was a good range of things to chat about!
The nice thing about this activity is that it can be left out and added to again and again... you don't have to do all of the matching at one time.
You can also easily pull all of the circles off and start again. They are very easy to move around unless you leave them stuck on the contact paper for a long time... and then pieces of the paper start to peel off and stick to the contact paper.
My daughter was super proud of herself when she was done matching all of the pictures.
For Younger Kids:
For littler kids don't worry about matching the pictures, just have fun sticking the circles on the sticky wall and moving them around and talking about the pictures.
My 18 month old son loved moving the circles around and talking about each one. As we moved the circles on and off the sticky wall I would tell him the name of a person or object and he would try and repeat me. He added several new vocabulary words to his repertoire as tore down and re-stuck the pictures. His favorite was BOAT and ABBY (of Abby Cadabby from Sesame Street).