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Sorting Laundry

Bite-sized brain snacks for Chicago’s early learners.


You don't need special school materials to give your child practice with sorting – you have laundry! Ask your child to help you sort the laundry into two piles: light colors and dark colors. Provide several examples to begin each pile and then see if your child can take the lead!

Why It's Important

Sorting by color is a good beginning activity for young learners. Once mastered, move on to more complex attributes such as shape and size.


Talk about all of the things you regularly sort in your house. Silverware, laundry, toys, mail, etc. Ask your child, "What would happen if we didn't sort these things? When you grow up and live in your own home, do you think you will sort these same things too?"

Not Ready Yet

Your child can begin learning about sorting and matching by looking for pairs of socks.

Need a Challenge

Include different types of laundry such as towels, sheets, and blue jeans. Ask the child to first sort by dark and light, then sort by type of laundry.

Book Recommendations:

"Sort it Out" by Barbara Mariconda

Extend the learning:

Dump out a jar of buttons or coins and help your child separate them according to their attributes.