L is for Listening Skills {3 Science Games to Play}

The letter L is up next in our A to Z Science series for toddlers and preschoolers at Inspiration Laboratories. L is for Listening Skills.

L is for Listening Skills - part of the A to Z Science Series for Toddlers and Preschoolers at Inspiration Laboratories

Listening Skills

Listening is an important science skill as well as an important life skill. Listening is a part of making observations. In order to become better listeners, we need to practice {just like anything else}. Practicing skills is always more fun when it’s in a game format. I’ve got 3 quick and easy listening games perfect for toddlers and preschoolers to share with you today. I’ve compiled a list of listening games and activities, too!

A Listening Box

Practice Listening Skills with a Listening Box

A listening box is similar to a touch box or mystery bag. You place an object in a closed box or bag. The child reaches her hand inside the box or bag and tries to guess what’s inside. She uses her sense of touch to help her out. It’s the same concept with the listening box only she’ll use her sense of hearing to hear what’s inside the box.

  1. Choose some objects that make noise to place in your box one item at a time. {Bells, rattles, crinkly paper, you get the idea.}
  2. Place one of the objects in the box. {Hide the items not in use in a separate box or bag.}
  3. Make noise with the object in the box.
  4. Ask your child what is making the noise. What is that sound? What makes this noise?
  5. Show the object to your child and let him make the noise.
  6. Repeat with new objects.

Sound Eggs

Sound eggs are always popular with kids. There’s just something delightful about shaking the eggs and guessing what’s inside. It’s the same idea as the listening box only this time all of the objects are inside eggs and the sound is produced by shaking the egg. Be careful when using the sound eggs as you will most likely choose small items that can easily be swallowed. Keep the egg closed and always supervise.

Here are some ideas for what to put inside the eggs:

  • bells
  • rice
  • pom poms
  • beans
  • marbles
  • beads {different sizes and materials}
  • wooden circles
  • puzzle pieces
  • milk caps
  • rocks
  • googly eyes

Sound eggs make a great matching game. Fill two eggs with the same objects. Have your child shake the eggs and try to match the sounds.

Practice Listening Skills with Sound Eggs

Aiden filled our sound eggs with the objects below.

Practice Listening Skills with Sound Eggs

What’s That Sound? {A Listening Game that Gets Kids Moving}

I’m all for activities that get kids up and moving. Aiden loves anything if it’s a race. Our Letter Sounds Race and Tape Race prove that point. This game practices listening skills and gets kids moving a bit.

Practice Listening Skills with a Listening Game

All you need are some objects that can make noise or you can hit/touch to make a sound.

How to Play:

  1. Have your child stand on one side of the room. Place the noise making objects with you on the other side of the room.
  2. Ask your child to turn around facing away from you.
  3. Make a noise with one of the objects.
  4. Ask your child to run across the room and choose the object that made the noise.
  5. Reset and play again.

To make the game easier, listen to all of the sounds before you start the game. Ask your child to describe the sounds. Does it sound like a drum? Does it sound like water dripping? Is it metallic sounding?

Take It Outside

Practice your listening skills outside. My husband is an avid birder and used to do research before becoming a teacher. His love of birding has been passed on to my son. Aiden loves searching for birds and trying to identify them. Use your listening skills to distinguish between different types of birds. Can you tell the difference between the song of a Northern Cardinal and the call of a Blue Jay? The Cornell Lab of Ornithology has an awesome online bird guide to help you learn if you’re interested.

What else can you hear outside?

Share Your Explorations

Head over to the Science for Kids Community on Google+ and share pictures of your listening explorations. Or stop by the Inspiration Laboratories Facebook page and share with us there.

More Listening Activities to Try

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