is another great visual discrimination skills activity.
You will need different calendar pictures ... you can use
the full size pictures or mini calendar pictures. We cut
the larger calendar pictures into four pieces and laminated
them. The smaller pictures can also be cut into four pieces
or into halves and laminated. You can watch a video of this
paint is easy to make and fun to paint with. When the paint
is dry it has a puffy look and texture. You will need to
have shaving cream ... white glue ... and paint. I mix equal
parts of the shaving cream and white glue together and then
add paint. The paint then can be used like fingerpaint.
You can watch a video of this activity here.
Shell Discovery Bottle
shell bottles are really easy to make and the children really
love to explore the different kind of sea shells in the
bottles. You will need an empty water bottle ... sea shells
... and decorative stones. The sea shells will need to be
small enough to fit through the opening of the bottle. I
purchased our sea shells at Wal-Mart but they also sell
them in craft stores and in online stores. To make the bottles
you simply but the sea shells and decorative stones in the
bottle and then fill with water to almost the top of the
bottle. You can watch a video of this activity here.
Shell Discovery Tray
shells are a great way to bring real life objects into your
early learning environment. You just need to have a variety
of sea shells ... a tray to place them on ... and some magnifying
glasses. This is a great activity for a science or discovery
center. You can watch a video of this activity here.
set up a sorting activity using different kinds of sea shells
and a clear plastic relish tray purchased from Wal-Mart.
As a math extenstion the children counted the number sea
shells in each section of the sorting tray. You can watch
a video of this activity here.
put this watermelon observation jar in our science center
for children to observe how watermelon changes. You will
need to have plastic jar and sliced watermelon. We put the
watermelon inside the jar and then put the list on. We then
talked about what the watermelon looked liked and what it
might look like later after it has been set out for a while.
We also graphed and did surveys as to how long it would
take for changes to take place. Each day I put a card out
next to the jar that kept track of how long the watermelon
had been there. You can watch a video of this activity here.
counters are great for an early learning environment. You
can do a variety of counting and sorting activities with
them. For this activity I used bear counter in four colors
and three sizes. I put the bears in a container and the
children had to sort the bears by color into plastic cups
which had a color indicator on the front of them. After
the bears were sorted by color the children counted the
number of bears in each up and they then sorted the bears
by size and counted how many where in each size. You can
watch a video of this activity here.
is another couting bears activity. I put different amounts
of counting bears in four zip lock bags and put a letter
sticker on each one. Children count the number of bears
in each bag and write the numbers on the sheet which you
can find here.
You can watch a video of this activity here.
See and Spell
is a great name recognition activity. I wrote the name of
each child on a strip of cardstock paper and then wrote
the individual letters of the name in the blank squares.
I then laminated the pieces and attach self-adhesive magnets
on the backs. Children spell the names they see with the
letter squares. You can watch a video of this activity here.
To Make Finger Paint
is an easy to make recipe for finger paint.
Tablespoons of Sugar
1/3 C Cornstarch
2 C Cold Water
1/4 C Clear Dish Soap
sugar and cornstarch together in pan. Slowly add cold water
and stir. Cook over low-medium heat for around ten minutes.
Mixture will start outlooking like milk and then turn into
a transparent thick mixutre. Remove from heat and cool.
Stir in dish soap and divide mixture into four containers.
Add food color and stir.You can watch a video of this activity
really love colored pumpkin seeds. They are so easy to make
and you can do so many things with them such as sorting
... counting ... graphing ... and art activities.
To make the colored pumpkin seeds you will need:
clean dry pumpkin
1/2 -2/3 cup warm
water per color
1 tablespoon of
vinegar per color
For each color of pumpkins seeds you want to make you will
place the warm water in a cup and then add the vinegar.
Add you food color of choice and mix. Pour in dried pumpkin
seeds and stir. The longer you leave the pumpkin seeds in
the food color mixture the darker the color will be. We
let ours stay in for a couple of ours and stirred them a
few times. When the pumpkin seeds have reached the desired
color color scoop them out with fork and place on a cookie
sheet that has been lined with paper towels. After a couple
of hours you can place the pumpkin seeds on a wax paper
lined cookie sheet or tray. Dry for 24 hours (could be less
or more time depending upond the temperature of the air).
You can see a video of the colored pumpkin seeds here.You
can watch a video of this activity here.
Cups are a great addition to a math center. You can reuse
the cups and change the counting sticks. For these counting
cups we used owls to go along with our owl unit. Children
put the correct number of owl sticks in each cup. Children
can also put the cups in numerical order. You can see a
video of this activity and find the patterns here.
Links Letter Match
have long been a fan of learning links. There are so many
uses for them in an early learning environment. In this
activity children attach matching letter cards together
with learning links. This is a great activity for developing
letter recognition as well as fine motor skills. Learning
links can be purchased from amazon.com and other online
retailers. You can get the patterns and see a video here.
Pony Bead Sorting
is a great activty for fine motor development and math skills.
You will need to have red ... green ... and yellow pony
beads and the apple mat pattern. Children place the pony
beads on the same color apple on the mat and then count
the beads. You can get the patterns and see a video here.
Roll and Pick
made this game for our math center. It can be played individually
or in groups with children taking turns rolling the dice.
Start with all of the apples on the tree. Children roll
the dice and remove the number off apples from the tree
that was displayed on the dice. Play continues until all
of the apples are removed from the tree. We used red pom-poms
with self-adhesive magnets but I have also included red
markers that you can use if you do not have pom-poms. You
can get the patterns and see a video here.
blocks are great for matching ... for memory games ... and
even for building. They are super easy to make. You just
need to have blocks (they all need to be the same size)
... I just Jenga blocks that I was going to throw out because
of missing pieces. You will also need to have a variety
of scrapbook paper and glossy mod podge. I started by tracing
around a block on the back of a sheet of scrapbook paper
and then cutting it out. Next I applied a thin layer of
mod podge to the block with a brush and then placed the
pater I had cut out on top of the block. After letting the
blocks completely dry I applied a thin layer over the top
of the scrapbook paper. You can see a video of the blocks
Bead Sort ... Lace ... and Count
is a great activity for fine motor skills. You will need
to have pony beads and pipe cleaners in various colors.
Children sort through the pony beads and lace them on to
the same colored pipe cleaners. Children then count and
record how many pony beads are on each pipe cleaner. You
can see a video of this activity here.
Words In A Can
is a great activity for sight word recognition and review.
You will need to have empty paint cans which can be purchased
at most home improvement and paint stores. Sight words are
attached to the outside of the can with magnets. Children
pick a sight word and if they can read it they put it back
in the can and then choose a new word to read until all
of the sight words are back in the can. This can be for
both individual as well as group play. You can get the patterns
and see a video of this activity here.
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