Understanding opposites can be a challenge for young kids. Give your toddler or preschooler plenty of opportunities to practice identifying opposites. These activities will give her the practice she needs.
Turn learning opposites into a game. You’ll need to make flashcards of pairs of opposites. You might make one card with a picture of daytime and one with a picture of nighttime, for example. Lay out all of the cards so your toddler can see them. Have her pair up the opposites. As she gets better at the game, you can make it more difficult by turning it into a memory game. Flip the cards upside down and have her flip over two cards at a time. She tries to match up the pairs in a turn.
Act It Out
Another simple game is to act out the opposite. For example, if your toddler lies down, you stand up. If she runs, you walk. If she has her eyes open, you close yours. If she opens the lid on a container, you close it. Talk about the actions you’re doing and how they are the opposite of what your child is doing. You can also switch roles where you do an action and your child does the opposite.
Give your child a creative way to practice opposites with a craft project. Have her cut out pictures from magazines that show opposites. Or have her paint a picture that shows opposites. A crayon resist is another way to show opposites through art. Have her draw on white paper with a white crayon. Then have her paint over it with black watercolor paint. The resulting artwork shows the white lines against the dark background.
Reading books is a simple way to reinforce the idea of opposites with your toddler or preschooler. There are several picture books available that focus on opposites. A few examples are “Opposites” by Sandra Boynton, “What’s Up, Duck? A Book of Opposites” by Tad Hills, “Opposites” by Eric Carle, “Octopus Opposites” by Stella Blackstone and “Big Is Big (And Little, Little): A Book of Contrasts” by J. Patrick Lewis.