This post and giveaway is sponsored by Melissa & Doug, LLC. There are no affiliate links used in this post. Please see my disclosure at the bottom of this post.
Although I make and share lots of worksheets and printables for my little people, I make it very clear that play is the main form of “school” for my preschoolers.
Sure, they often want to “do school” like their older siblings, and they occasionally have a color-by-number worksheet, but the vast majority of their days are filled with imaginative play.
There is nothing better than finding my 3 year-old playing in her dollhouse and the family is having an elaborate “conversation.” 🙂
Without a doubt, some of our favorite, lasting toys have been from Melissa & Doug. In fact, as I gathered our Melissa & Doug toys from around the house to write this post, I was shocked at how many puzzles we own!
Because of the durable quality and boundless opportunities to use their imaginations, I consider Melissa & Doug toys to be an investment as I would any of our other homeschool materials.
How We Use Melissa & Doug Toys During School Time
My littlest just turned 3 last weekend, and much to her surprise, she received the Melissa & Doug Slice and Bake Cookie Set! Oh it’s every bit as dreamy as it looks!
In just the past week, she has sliced those cookies and placed them on the tray only a million times. She has always loved play food and this set is certainly her favorite.
And this set is also a favorite of mine as well – the tray has velcro to keep her cookies from sliding off (to ease frustration), the set comes with a realistic knife, spreader, and oven mitt, and the pieces are, of course, made of durable materials.
It also provides tons of opportunity for us to use this set during Preschool time.
- Count the number of cookies – there are 12
- Sort the toppings by type
- Fine motor skills get a workout using the knife and spreader
- Count the toppings (circles)
- Review colors on top of the cookies
- Create patterns and have her complete them
- Have a picnic where she has to find all the needed items
Puzzle Time During Preschool
At least one morning each week during Preschool time, we drag out all of our puzzles and dump and put together over and over. So many wonderful little conversations have been had over our Puzzle Time!
Puzzles help build hand-eye coordination, help little ones with spatial recognition, and build fine motor skills.
But mostly, they’re just plain fun. 😉
Find the Top Melissa & Doug Toys this Holiday Season
Several of the gifts we buy for cousins and friends this Christmas Season will be from Melissa & Doug. I’ve already browsed their Holiday Shop and chosen a few favorites, but I first took a peek at their Terrific 25 Gift Ideas List.
If you want to take a look at the season’s top sellers, head over to Top Holiday Gifts.
—>And if you’re a deal shopper, make sure you stop by Holiday Specials for current specials (that run through Cyber Monday!!)
Join in our Fantastic Melissa & Doug Giveaway!
I am certainly not the only Melissa & Doug fan out there!
The bloggers below have all partnered together to bring you this fantastic giveaway from Melissa & Doug! Each blogger writes in the “kid niche area” meaning that you can click through to any blog and find inspiration for play-based educational activities, arts, and crafts that your kids are sure to love! (And please click through because these are some smart, creative mamas who so freely share their ideas!)
Each of these bloggers are fans of Melissa & Doug because they know the value of encouraging little ones to explore and learn through play!
Enter for a chance to win one of two $150 Melissa & Doug Toy Shopping Sprees! The giveaway is open to US Residents only and closes at midnight on Monday, December 8th. Complete as many entry options as you like!
—>Hint: If you finish the entry options below, it will unlock a second set of entry options that are worth more than double the points on the first page! Your chances of winning go up dramatically the more entries you get in the hat!
Disclosure: Lauren Hill of Mama’s Learning Corner received no compensation for sponsoring this event, nor is she responsible for the delivery of the prize. Prize delivery is the sole responsibility of Melissa & Doug, LLC. Two winners will be drawn randomly and notified by email. The winners will have 48 hours to respond in order to claim their prize. If they do not respond within the 48 hours, they will forfeit the prize and an alternate winner will be chosen. This post may contain affiliate links. For more info, please see my disclosure policy.