Cognitive Activities for Preschoolers Young Children

Written by terry moore
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Cognitive activities are designed to help in the development of the brain and thinking skills. Activities that promote cognitive skills include learning colours, shapes, sizes, letters and numbers. Young children, between the ages of three and five, are just beginning to learn how the world around them works. Cognitive activities help to promote fine and gross motor skills and will also help prepare them for preschool and kindergarten.

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Show your child pictures of different shapes. Use simple shapes at first, such as circles, squares and triangles. Ask your child to point out different objects around your home that are similar in appearance to the shape illustrated in the picture. Once the child is able to easily identify simple shapes, try more complex shapes, such as rectangles and trapezoids.


Choose a new colour each day to have your child look for throughout the day's events. Remind them to look for things in that colour while at home, riding in a car or in a store. Begin with primary colours, then move on to secondary colours. Once the child is able to identify these colours, move on to more subtle hues and shades that she sees in the world around her.


Show your child pictures of different animals. Tell the child what kind of animal it is, what sound the animal makes and what the animal's identifying features are. For a zebra, the identifying feature would be the stripes, an elephant's would be it's trunk. Start with common animals, such as cats, dogs and horses. Once the child is able to identify these animals, move on to less common animals.

Clean Up

Ask your child to sort her toys into categories. Different categories might include big and small, inside and outside toys, or according to colour. Once the child has separated the toys, ask her to put them away in the appropriate place. Help the child the first few times until she is able to identify the appropriate location for each toy.

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