Jacob is definitely not ready for a memory game but he can look through the cards and find matches. The first time I introduced the cards we just looked through them and talked about the animals we saw. We discussed their names and whether they were the 'baby' or the mama. We have made matches a couple of times, he is not always interested though. Today he pulled out the cards and matched them with his farm toys. I thought this was a really great connection. And I decided to use this time to do a little informal assessment.
For our informal assessment I just held up an animal card and asked what animal was on the card. I then asked what sound that animal made. He did great with this assessment. The only animal he did not correctly identify was the goat. We do not have a matching card for a goat but he brought the goat toy over so I asked him the name and sound of that one as well. He called it a sheep at first and I think he gets confused because the sound of the goat is similar to that of a sheep.
I have seen a lot of growth this month. He started the month only saying the animal sound for most and only saying a couple names when prompted. This reassures me of the importance of pre and post assessment. Of course at this age the assessments should all be informal. Assessments help you know where to start and where to go. You want to make sure you are working right above your child's level but not too far that they get frustrated. This will stretch them to learn new things while still building confidence and allowing for the whole process to be fun.