Toddlers love to help, and they also enjoy solving simple puzzles too.
Here's a simple idea you can do every time you empty the tumble drier or take washing off the line - and it makes the most of your child's growing understanding of similarities and differences.
It also allows your child to begin to understand the importance of numbers - and how there is a difference between 'one' and 'two' and 'lots'.
Ask your toddler to take out all the socks from the laundry basket of clean washing.
A younger toddler will need a little help at first, but as socks should be a pretty familiar object, they'll soon get the picture.
Get your child to put the socks to one side, in another box or basket. You'll not have to mind too much about your clean washing being rummaged through!
How to make a magic moment
Give a little commentary as your child is doing all the sorting: 'Oh, what a lot of socks, all different colours and all mixed up!' Point out any they have missed: 'Look, that's one's got stuck inside your T-shirt - it's hiding!' Then when you have a pile of socks in the other basket, tell them: 'We've got to put them together!' Ask your child how many feet he/she has (tell them if they don't yet know). Then say: 'We need two socks for two feet!'
Your action now is to hold up a sock, and to ask your toddler: 'Where's the other one?' When he finds the other sock, say something he can join in with, e.g. 'Yes, the same!' If he presents the 'wrong' sock, say 'No, that one's different!' and let them try again. Say your 'line' every time. When you have got all the pairs sorted, you can applaud your work together.