Hands-On Games for Kids Under 8

Children under eight are learning basic concepts of math and reading. You can help your child build these concepts through hands-on games. The examples below are fun games that your child will enjoy and learn from.

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Why Are Hands-On Games Effective?

Hands-on games are effective because children are able to become active participants in their learning. When children are able to interact with learning materials, they are more engaged with what they are studying and will likely be able to retain the concepts. Using games is a great way to combine learning and playing, which will help kids under eight maintain focus and attention.

Letter Scavenger Hunt

Letter recognition is an integral part of literacy. Help your child enhance this skill by having her go on a letter scavenger hunt. Give her a letter of the alphabet and have her find as many items as she can around the house that start with that letter. For example, if you give her the letter P, she can look for a pencil, peas and paper.

For younger children, you can go around the house showing them items that begin with a particular letter. Older children can have a contest to see who can find the most items with that letter. You can challenge your child by limiting her scavenger hunt to a specific area of the house or only to food items.

Cheerio Art

Teach your child shape recognition and expand his imagination by giving him a bowlful of Cheerios, some paper, crayons and glue to see how many things he can create using the cereal. Give him some examples by drawing a smiley face and using the Cheerios for eyes or drawing a car and using the Cheerios for wheels. Younger children can give you suggestions and watch you make objects, while older children can be challenged to see how many objects they can create within a certain time limit.


Teach your child how to measure in a fun way by using gummy worms and a ruler. Measure out one inch using a gummy worm (cut off the excess). Have your child use the 1-inch gummy worm to measure objects around the house. For example, if she measures a shoe and it is four gummy worms long, she will know that the shoe is four inches long. With younger kids, you can just cut various lengths of gummy worms and have them compare the lengths, while older kids can do actual measuring.

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