Garden Match Up File Folder Game

Nothing designates the arrival of spring more than flowers and fluttering butterflies. This eye-catching file folder game puts the two together, and provides children with the opportunity to brush up on their color recognition skills.

MATERIALS USED:

– File Folder
– Construction paper in various colors
– Our free butterfly and flower templates
– Scissors
– Glue
– Puffy paint


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Charlie Rooster Shape Craft

This Charlie Rooster shape craft is a fabulous extension to the story Friends written and illustrated by Helme Heine. Together, these activities teach pro-social behavior, shape knowledge, and color recognition.

As children grow, they become increasingly interested in establishing friendships. Friends provide stimulation, assistance, camaraderie, and affection.

Charlie Rooster, Johnny Mouse, and Percy the pig are the best of friends. They do everything together. They ride their bike together, play games together, and even do their chores together. Because that’s what best friends do. This charming book glorifies friendship; proving that friends can make even the most simple, everyday delights seem extraordinary. In cheerful watercolors, Helme Heine depicts the tremendous spirit of these adorable animals, who are filled with the enthusiasm and pleasure of companionship.

MATERIALS USED:

– Construction paper
– Craft foam
– Our free circles template
– Scissors
– Glue
– Dot markers
– Googly eyes
– Heart cutouts/Fiskars heart squeeze punch
– Feathers
– Crayons


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Feed the Bunnies Counting Activity

I’ve been teaching for many years, and I am always looking for inexpensive, new ways to present learning opportunities to the children. I recently put together this free Feed the Bunnies math game. This colorful teaching tool attracts the children’s attention, and increases number sense (counting, number recognition, etc.).

We will be using this activity as an extension to the story Home For a Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown. This book is about a bunny is in search of the perfect home in spring. However, when he meets a family of robins, a frog, and a groundhog, the bunny realizes that not every home he finds will suit him. The bunny eventually comes upon the perfect home and someone to share it with. The beautiful illustrations of Garth Williams bring the story to life.

MATERIALS USED:

– White card stock
– Plastic cups
– Our free printable numbered bunnies (1-10)
– Googly eyes
– Cotton balls
– Stapler
– Easter grass
– Plastic carrots (Walmart)


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The Colored Hens Circle Time Activity

One of my favorite children’s books is The Little Red Hen. I read it every year to my class. I often pair the story with this interactive circle time activity, which is designed to improve listening skills, and teach colors. It also gives children an opportunity to follow directions and to participate during large group.

Cut out colored hens to match the colors in the poem (the hen pattern is provided here). I happened to have some extra felt, so I just used that. However, construction paper will work just as well. Glue the hens onto paper plates, add some googly eyes, and coordinating craft sticks. I used watercolors to color the sticks.

During circle time, give each child a hen. Some colors may have to be repeated depending upon how many children are in the circle. Instruct the children to hold up their hen when they hear their color, then read the poem below. This is a fantastic attention grabber. My preschoolers, even my “busy” ones, hold their breath with anticipation, just waiting to hear their color words; they get so excited to spring into action!

THE COLORED HENS POEM:

This little hen is brown
You’ll never catch her with a frown

This little hen is black
She’s not a duck, so she doesn’t quack

This little hen is yellow
She’s friends with Mr. Rooster – he’s a happy fellow

This little hen is purple
She likes to walk in a circle

This little hen is green
On the farm she can been seen

This little hen is blue,
She likes to follow me and you

This little hen is red
She’s laid all her eggs in her bed

After the poem is read, and all the hens have been held up, talk about the different colors. To build phonemic awareness, the rhyming words should also be repeated and discussed.

MATERIALS USED:

– Colored felt or construction paper
– Our free hen pattern
– Scissors
– Tacky glue
– Paper plates
– Jumbo craft sticks/tongue depressors
Washable liquid watercolors
– Googly eyes


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Graphing With Jellybeans

Not only is graphing with jellybeans a yummy way to spend some time, it’s also educational; there are so many learning concepts packed into this small activity. Obviously, the main is graphing. But graphing is just the umbrella that covers several mighty and oh-so important math principles. In this particular instance, the children must rely on their color knowlegde to sort and classify the jellybeans. After placing the candy on their graphs, they will use their counting skills (one-to-one correspondence) to count and match the number of beans, in a row, to its corresponding number below.

Hello, number recognition!

Graphing also incorporates the concept of more/less/same. Ask your preschooler/s questions like, “Do you have more red jellybeans or more purple jellybeans – or are they the same?” Children often struggle with the definition of the word ‘less’, so it’s best to emphasize that, “Less means not as many.”

Just a note to add: Many of my fellow teachers ask me about my policy with eating the candy. My own rule is that after the activity is completed, the child may choose ONE special jellybean to enjoy. The rest are bagged up and labeled (by my assistant) and placed in the parent box to take home.

Download the Jellybean Graphing printable here.

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