Body and Movement Toddler GameHere is a very simple game to play with a toddler. The rules are simple–the child will mimic what is being done. By doing so, the child learns to follow simple direction and important vocabulary.

“Mommy Says” is a modified version of the game “Simeon Says”. Because the original game involves thinking skills that are too advanced for my 19 month old, I changed the game to be more developmentally appropriate by omitting the “catch” (player is out if they do a movement that wasn’t preceded by the “Simeon says” phrase). To play, state, “Mommy says to…” and the child should do as stated. Actions should be simple as well as the movements. If the child needs support with following the direction, then show him/her the action as you restate it. Always give the child the opportunity to do the action independently first before providing the “answer”. This not only allows them time to think about what was said and should be done, but also communicates that they have a turn in the conversation/game. Examples include…

touch your nose

touch your eyes

touch your ears

bend your arms/knees/neck

As the child learns a few of the action words through repetition (e.g. touch, bend), incorporate other words to expand their vocabulary. Examples include…

stomp your feet

stretch your arms

wave your hands

wiggles your hips

 

 

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