Placemats Are a Great Teaching Tool




By Noreen Doll.

We’ve discovered that placemats are a great teaching tool.

Kids love to use the colorful mats at mealtime, and they can’t help seeing and learning what’s on the mats.

Placemats Are Great Teaching Tools - Crafty Journal
Our kids are voracious learners, and they’ve learned so much from place mats.

We’ve had some really interesting ones, including a U.S.A. map with states and capitals, the solar system, the constellation, the Presidents with facts about them on the reverse side, and dinosaurs.

Placemats Are a Great Teaching Tool - Crafty Journal

Not only can you find placemats with all kinds of information, you can make your own according to what you want your kids to learn.

You can make them so kids can learn their alphabet or numbers. Use a 12×15 piece of cardboard to write the alphabet on, and then cover both sides with clear contact paper.

Kids can trace the letters with erasable markers and use them over and over.

Make a fun placemat with photos of family members and kids can learn to identify them. This is especially nice if you use photos of members the kids don’t see often.

We made this fun placemat with fall leaves we collected.

Crafty Journal - Fall Leaf Placemat

Fall Leaf Placemat

By making placemats yourself, you can change them as your kids interests or needs change.

And covering them with clear Contact paper will help them last for as long as you need them.

Noreen Doll

Crafty Journal

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Comments

  1. What a wonderful idea. I have grandchildren that need tutoring from time to time and this will make a wonderful fun tool to help them and they won’t even know it is tutoring. Ha Ha

  2. Great idea Noreen – wish I’d thought of that when my kids were young. I must keep this in mind for future grandchildren!

  3. love this idea! I am already thinking of some for the grandkids. Maybe the grandparents too lol.

  4. Great craft for kids. Thanks so much for sharing with Adorned From Above’s Link Party.
    Debi and Charly

  5. You have such good information, I’ve already pinned three things from one link up party that are yours! :)

  6. I love this idea. This will be great for our 4th of July round-up on Artsy Play Wednesday. It is such a wonderful idea to have the background of their meal be a learning tool.

  7. Awesome idea! Off to surf your blog! (Glad I came across it on All Things With Purpose.)

  8. So many learning opportunities can come at meal time. What a great idea!

    Thanks for linking up on #ArtsyPlay this week! We hope to see you again next week, our RoundUp is Rainbow Fun!

  9. I remember having placemats like this as a kid, I loved them. The alphabet idea would be fun, great idea to use a dry erase marker with them. Thanks for sharing.

  10. I totally learned all the presidents and states/capitols as a
    kid via placemats. Love the idea
    of making your own!

  11. I spent a good portion of my childhood breakfast time reading cereal boxes because nothing else was on the table… this is a way better idea! I just discovered your blog through Create with Joy. I love ideas!

  12. Totally on the same page with you Noreen, or at least my mother was and now I am. We have some map placemats that are so wonderful, and funny enough whenever we’re talking about world geography, it’s that placemat map that is handy and so manageable to pull out! Thanks for sharing on craft schooling Sunday!

  13. We used to have one with presidents and the US map, and they were fun for the kids to use. This is also a great idea for a summer craft–thanks for linking up at Snickerdoodle Sunday! :)

  14. We have a collection of placemats with maps, addition, etc. Thanks so much for linking this up to the Friday Frenzy.

  15. That’s a great idea! Thanks for linking up to Sweet and Savoury Sunday, stop by and link up again. Have a great day!!

  16. wayne beatty says:

    I am looking for a placemat for my grandson that has autisim. I need something that has drinks all around the boarderline that he maybe be able to communicate with us. Something big enough to put a plate in the middle and be able to see the figures on the outside. Maybe even deserts also. I have searched all around and have come up with nothing. You might can help me and a lot of other people.
    Wayne Beatty

  17. Hi Wayne, I think this is a great idea!

    I have a couple of ideas for how you can make a placemat for your grandson.

    1. You will need a piece of card stock or poster board that is 12 inches x 15 inches. You can make it bigger if you think you need it to allow pictures all around it.

    2. Make a list of all the drinks and foods that you want to have on the placemat.

    3. Then look in magazines or old kids’ books to find a picture to go with each thing on the list – and cut it out.

    Or.. You can take a photo of each item you want to put on the placement, and then print it. For example, you can take a photo of a cup he uses with milk or juice or whatever he drinks.

    4. Glue the pictures around the edges of the placemat.

    5. Turn the card board over and use the other side for pictures of another group of things you want to teach your grandson.

    6. Get a roll of clear Contact Paper. I’ve seen this in the Dollar Store so it shouldn’t be too expensive.

    Use the Contact Paper to cover both sides of the placemat – leaving at least half an inch extending beyond the edge of the card stock all the way around.

    7. Use the edge of a sturdy ruler to press the contact paper firmly to the card stock.

    8. Trim any excess Contact Paper, but be sure to leave that extra half inch all the way around to seal the edge of the placemat.

    You might want to put his name in the middle of the placemat so he can see it regularly and learn it.

    I hope this works!

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