The letter “I” is an important one for preschoolers to learn. However, this letter can be tricky because, like the other vowels, “I” makes two different sounds.
You can hear the “long I” in many words your preschooler already knows – words like “smile”, “time”, and “night-night”. “Short I” also crops up in plenty of common words like “fish”, “sit”, and “tickle.”
For this letter with TWO sounds, it only makes sense to have TWO different fun activities. First up – homemade Long-I ice cream!
Whipping up a micro-batch of ice cream at home is quick, fun, and uses real ingredients you probably already have on hand. Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 gallon-size plastic bag
- 1 sandwich-size plastic bag
- 1 cup half-and-half
- 2 Tbsp sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- ¼ cup salt (rock salt or kosher salt work best)
Add your half-and-half, sugar, and vanilla to the sandwich-size bag. Close it up, eliminating any air from the bag as best you can. (Make sure the bag is completely sealed – you don’t want salt getting in and ruining the ice cream!)
Place your bag of ice cream mix into the gallon-size bag. Fill the gallon-size bag about halfway with ice, then add your salt. Seal up the gallon-size bag and shake, shake, shake! After shaking for 6-8 minutes, remove the sandwich-size bag. Rinse it well with cool water to remove all the salt, then squeeze into a bowl and enjoy.
For your next batch, add a little chocolate syrup, peppermint extract, fresh fruit, or crushed candy. You could even try a dash of food coloring to create something totally unexpected. You definitely won’t find blue vanilla with strawberry and chocolate chips in any grocery store.
When your little ice cream chef is ready to move on, share the coloring page below. See how many “I” words you can find together.