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Gloves, hats and scarves come in so many different fabrics, bright colours and interesting patterns that children will be as interested in sorting them into categories, as thinking about their purpose.
What you need
a large container, washing basket or box
winter clothing such as coats, warm socks, hats, ear warmers
pairs of gloves and socks
equal number of scarves, and hats
What you do
Gather the clothes together and place on floor or table.
Let the children explore the clothes, trying them on and talking about them.
When they have had plenty of time to explore the clothes in free play, begin to talk about the different sorts, patterns, shapes and sizes.
The children could sort the clothes into chosen categories, such as type of garment, colour or thickness.
Match up pairs of gloves or socks.
Take one pair of gloves and find a hat to match the colour.
Have a winter dressing up race, where the children race to put on a hat, scarf, gloves, boots and coat.
Talk about the clothes the children are wearing and how they keep them warm.
Ready for more?
Put a pile of pairs of mittens in the middle of the room. Ask each child to take one mitten. Play some music and ask them to dance and move. When the music stops, ask them to find their matching mitten. Continue playing by taking off the mittens and putting them in the middle. Gloves can be used for this game, but some children will find it difficult to put them on and take them off quickly.
Provide scraps of fleece, wools and other thick fabrics to make a winter collage.
Put out small hats and gloves for use when dressing dolls and teddies.
Look for matching patterns in clothes. Photograph the patterns close up and print pairs to make a pattern matching game.