Wednesday, March 16, 2016

100 Ways for Kids to Play & Learn with Light

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My kids have always enjoyed light table activities and mirror play. And I'm pretty sure every kid on the planet enjoys playing with a flashlight!

There's just something appealing about light play for kids.

So to get you inspired to explore light and reflections with your own children (or class if you're a teacher!), I have put together this impressive list of 100 light table activities, natural light activities, and mirror play ideas for kids.

100 light play ideas for kids including light table activities, mirror play, and natural light activities from And Next Comes L

Back in late 2013, I joined forces with some other bloggers to create the Light & Reflections series. A collection of ways for kids to play and learn with light and reflections, this series continued until the end of 2015. A couple of new bloggers were added along the way to bring you even more amazing light play ideas for kids. In fact, we brought you exactly 100 amazing ways for kids to play and learn with light over the course of the series.

To make it easier to browse, I have arranged these 100 light play ideas for kids into common themes and seasons, including holidays like Christmas, topics like science, and units like all about me.

Literacy Light Play Ideas for Kids: Alphabet, Nursery Rhymes, & Fairy Tales

Whether you want to work on identifying letters, spelling your name, or exploring themes like nursery rhymes or fairy tales, these literacy based light play ideas are loads of fun!

  1. Humpty Dumpty Light Table Play (pictured)
  2. 10 in a Bed Silhouettes Nursery Rhymes from Frog in a Pocket
  3. Itsy Bitsy Spider Window Activity (pictured) from Where Imagination Grows
  4. Nursery Rhyme Retelling Slides on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  5. Fairy Tale Sentence Building with Free Printable
  6. Jack & the Beanstalk Window Retelling from Still Playing School
  7. Fairy Tales Crown Math Game from Where Imagination Grows
  8. Fairy Castles on the Light Table (pictured) from Frog in a Pocket
  9. Alphabet Sorting on the Light Table
  10. Helping Kids Learn Their Name with Personalized Suncatchers from Happily Ever Mom
  11. Mirror Literacy: Exploring Symmetry in Letters from Still Playing School
  12. Light Table Letter Search from Where Imagination Grows
  13. Tracing Letters on Mirrors
  14. Flashlight Alphabet Game (pictured) from Happily Ever Mom
  15. Geoboard Letters on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows

Art Light Play Ideas for Kids

Get ready to create some beautiful arts and crafts that take advantage of natural light, such as our suncatcher ideas, or try creating some process art on the light table.

  1. Play Dough Window Art (pictured)
  2. DIY Glowing Scratch Art Paper (pictured) from Still Playing School
  3. Painting with Light (pictured) from Frog in a Pocket
  4. Chalk Art on the Light Table (pictured) from Where Imagination Grows
  5. Abstract Window Art (pictured)
  6. No Mess Painting on the Light Table from Happily Ever Mom
  7. Sand Art on the Light Table (pictured) from Still Playing School
  8. Glue Art on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  9. Washi Tape Art on the Light Table
  10. Melted Pony Bead & Tissue Paper Suncatcher (pictured) from Happily Ever Mom
  11. Ladybug Suncatcher from Happily Ever Mom
  12. Light Table Nature Mosaics with Loose Parts from Where Imagination Grows

Math Light Play Ideas for Kids

From counting to fractions, kids of all ages will love learning about math with these epic light play ideas.

  1. Learning to Tell Time on the Light Table
  2. Hundred Chart Patterns on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  3. Train Your Brain Number Trails from Frog in a Pocket
  4. DIY Jumbo Math Dice for Light Table Play
  5. Shape Puzzles: Early Learning on the Light Table from Happily Ever Mom
  6. Introducing Fractions on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  7. Snowball Counters: Counting Circles on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  8. Giant Window Calculator from Still Playing School

Science & STEM Light Play Ideas for Kids

You can use light and mirrors to explore all sorts of scientific concepts. From simple engineering activities to science experiements, these STEM light play ideas are brilliant and fun!

  1. Scoop & Pour Serving Practice on the Light Table (pictured) from Still Playing School
  2. Sink or Float Science on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  3. Experimenting with Ice, Colored Water, & Salt on the Light Table from Happily Ever Mom
  4. Bubbling Color Mixing on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  5. Oil & Water Experiment on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  6. Animal Science with X-Rays on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  7. Experimenting with Light from Frog in a Pocket
  8. Building 3D Shapes on Windows
  9. Building with Straws on the Light Table from Happily Ever Mom
  10. Fairy Land: Building with Recycled Materials on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  11. Exploring Symmetry: Building with Rainbow Blocks on a Mirror from Where Imagination Grows

All About Me Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

If you're looking to add some ideas to your all about me theme in preschool or kindergarten, then you'll certainly want to try these unique light play ideas!

  1. Body Tracing Self-Portrait Mirror Drawings
  2. All About Me Baby Play Station from Happily Ever Mom
  3. All About My Feelings: Identifying Emotions with Self-Portraits from Still Playing School
  4. Photo Puzzles on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  5. Reggio Mirror Self-Portraits from Racheous

Under the Sea Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

Maybe you're planning an under the sea theme for preschool or kindergarten? Well, if you are, then you'll certainly want to check out these ideas. Or hello, shark week! That shark suncatcher will be a perfect collaborative project for that occasion!

  1. Giant Shark Suncatcher Craft
  2. Fish Color Matching on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  3. Under the Sea Small World on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows

Transportation Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

Keep these ideas in mind if you are planning a transportation theme for preschool or kindergarten.

  1. Traffic Light Suncatcher Craft & Light Table Play
  2. Airplane Color Sorting on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  3. Busy City on the Light Table from Frog in a Pocket
  4. Window Race Track from Happily Ever Mom

Fine Motor Skills & Practical Life Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

Need to target fine motor skills? Here are some fun ways to target them on the light table.

  1. Teaching Kids How to Set the Table on the Light Table
  2. DIY Photo Lace Cards for Building Fine Motor Skills from Happily Ever Mom
  3. Weaving with Straws on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows

Music Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

Want to get a bit musical with your light play? These ideas will certainly get the kids moving and exploring!

  1. Homemade Glowing Floor Piano
  2. Glow-in-the-Dark Egg Shakers from Happily Ever Mom
  3. Musical Water Experiments on the Light Table from Still Playing School

Gross Motor Light Play Ideas for Kids

Need the kids to burn some energy? Try these fun light play ideas that will get the kids moving.

  1. Ball in a Box Gross Motor Boredom Buster
  2. Mimicking Movement with Mirrors from Where Imagination Grows

Pretend Play Light Play Ideas for Kids

Inspire hours of imaginative play with these wonderful light play ideas for kids.

  1. Frog Pond Small World on the Light Table
  2. Pony Bead Puppets on the Light Table from Happily Ever Mom
  3. DIY Shadow Puppets from Where Imagination Grows
  4. Vet Office Pretend Play from Still Playing School

Sensory Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

Want some tactile sensory input? These ideas combine tactile with light for some really unique and fun sensory experiences!

  1. Animal Prints Sensory Mirror Process Art
  2. Black Light Play: Shaving Cream That Glows from Where Imagination Grows

Spring & Easter Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

If you're looking for seasonal light play ideas for spring and Easter, you'll certainly want to give these ideas a try!

  1. Flower Mandalas on the Light Table with Free Printable (pictured)
  2. Sticky Window Flower Garden (pictured) from Still Playing School
  3. Mosaic Flower Art Window Collage from Where Imagination Grows
  4. Sticky Flowers on the Light Table (pictured) from Happily Ever Mom
  5. Spring Mirror Drawings
  6. Touch & Feel Spring Suncatchers from Happily Ever Mom
  7. Easter Eggs on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  8. Spring Light Table Sensory Bin from Where Imagination Grows

Fall & Halloween Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

From pumpkins to Halloween, these fall and autumn inspired light play ideas are sure to please the kiddos!

  1. Pumpkin Addition on the Light Table
  2. Pumpkin Patch Small World on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  3. Fall Tic Tac Toe on the Light Table
  4. Counting & Adding Acorns on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  5. Autumn Lanterns from Frog in a Pocket
  6. Halloween Sensory Play on the Light Table
  7. Five Little Pumpkins on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  8. Halloween ABC Learning on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows

Winter & Christmas Themed Light Play Ideas for Kids

From snowflakes and Christmas trees, here are some wonderul ways to celebrate the winter season through light play.

  1. Winter Math Tray on the Light Table
  2. Winter Mirror Box Play from Still Playing School
  3. Igloo Craft & Arctic Small World on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  4. Christmas Science on the Light Table
  5. Retelling "The Mitten" on the Light Table from Still Playing School
  6. Arctic Animal Small World on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
  7. Christmas Tree Activity from Happily Ever Mom
  8. Tracing Christmas Shapes on the Light Table
  9. Stackable Egg Carton Snowmen on the Light Table from Happily Ever Mom
  10. Christmas Tree & Snowmen Light Table Play from Where Imagination Grows
  11. Exploring Symmetry with Snowflakes in a DIY Mirror Box
  12. Christmas Counting Puzzles on the Light Table from Where Imagination Grows
100 light play ideas for kids including light table activities, mirror play, and natural light activities from And Next Comes L
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