Tuesday 10 May 2011


Montessori Activity: Playing "I Spy"/视觉游戏

Age: From 2 years old

Activity Duration: 5-15 minutes

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

1. To prepare the child to listen for sounds in words.

1. Alphabet cards (optional)
2. 3-5 objects that match the beginning letter of the alphabet card.

1. You can also play this game on a mat and putting out a few objects start with clear sounds such as a dog, apple, cat and ring, etc. *

2. Take out a letter card and say, "I spy something that begin with 'd', can you tell me what it is?"

3. Then place the letter on the object (the dog) on the mat that begins with 'd'.

* For younger children, according to The Learning Ark, when introducing them to the "I Spy" game, you may only want to start with one object. Take one object from a drawstring bag and place it on the table. Then say, "I spy with my little eye something beginning with 'd', can you tell me what it is?" Since there is only one object on the mat, the child will be able to succeed and reply "dog". Reply: "I spy dog" and emphasis the 'd' in the word. Put the object back in the draw string bag and take another object, repeat the activity for the other object.


1. When your child is familiar with the "I spy" game, you can expand the surrounding such as identifying something in the room, garden, park, street, etc. that for example, begins with the letter 'd'.

2. Then say to your child "I spy with my little eye something beginning with 'd' (make the phonic sound of 'd'). Can you guess what it is?"

3. Your child has to guess what it is that you can see. For example, if you are in the street, you may be seeing a "dog", which is something that begins with "d".

4. Reverse the game and let your child have you guessing what he sees by him saying the letter's sound.

Video Demonstration:

Here is a good video on the sounds of the alphabets:


Additional Information:
I haven't started playing with J on "I Spy" yet, as English is his third language, and I am already struggling just to allocate a day a week to speak English to him. I can't use this game on Chinese, because the Chinese language is not based on phonics... aaarrrrgggh. But I hope that I will be able to start this game with J during our English class soon. I am feeling a little overwhelmed with my determination to stick with 3 languages, but some days are like that... Whe I focus on Chinese, I worry about his English! When I focus on English, I worry about his Chinese! As such, I could not do anything well. I should worry less, pray and just do my best and be happy with it.

- http://thelearningark.blogspot.com/2010/11/montessori-i-spy-sound-game.html

- Play and Learn by Lesley Britton

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