Geo-whiz Board

Note: I wrote this post pre-Sandy figuring I’d share it one week when I was running behind… I think this counts.  Things are moving ahead with the water remediation at chez Smith and we’re planning to head home later today.  The kids have been amazing despite the upheaval in their routine.  I said it yesterday, but my heart goes out to those people who don’t have a loving and inviting family to take them in or to those who simply can’t afford to get relief from the chaos.  My in laws could run a bed and breakfast based on their hospitality to our rowdy crew this week!

When I was teaching, we always had these bad boys on our Math shelf.  They were smaller but served the same purpose.  The kids could stretch rubber bands among the pegs to create patterns and shapes.  It was always a hit.

Of course when I saw a DIY version on Pinterest, I checked it out and it’s as simple as a quick trip to Home Depot.  (Aside: the ONLY way I can ever get to Home Depot is because they have race car carts.  Martha rides on me and Oliver/ Eleanor get a place steering the race car.)

Staying true to my 3 materials or less clause, this activity fits the bill.  Materials: Peg board (I had them cut the sheet into 3 pieces so it wasn’t quite so large… it comes in one standard size), 1/4″ machine screws (flat on the bottom, not pointed) and nuts.  We had rubber bands but I suppose that might count as material #4 if you don’t have any kicking around.

It’s a little tedious to screw in everything, but that’s what Bravo On Demand is for… got myself all caught up on the Housewives.  Screw into the pegboard from underneath and then use the nut on the top to hold the machine screws in place.  (I had to use a lug wrench to get the screws through the peg board, but a slightly smaller screw would have worked just as well if you don’t have a wrench set.)

Eleanor wandered over at some point and helped.  Sweet little fingers in deep concentration.

I used alternating holes and alternating rows to make my grid, but you can pick any pattern you like.

Depending upon the age of your child, this activity can target a wide array of skills… for Oliver’s age-set (2 years), simply coordinating his grip to stretch the rubber bands is challenge enough. (Apparently remembering not to walk on the geo-board is also a challenge for our fearless son.)

For Eleanor (3.5 years), she is learning about shapes and patterns so the geoboard can be adapted to fit her needs also (with colored rubber bands).

We have ours pushed underneath our toy shelf so the kids can drag it out whenever they feel like a little quiet pattern making. Or a fairy obstacle course.




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