Crafts, activities, singing and experimenting are a few preschool ideas that combine learning with fun. Preschool children are like sponges. They soak up everything they see, hear and experience, exploring the world through touch, sight, sound and taste.
Ideas for Using Food:
Food provides many learning opportunities that allow children to experiment with color, taste and textures, as well as counting and sorting. The latter provides the foundation for math and science education.
- Nutrition and its importance to their bodies are also subjects that can be discussed using snack foods.
- Counting crackers while stacking them or sorting jelly beans or other fruit snacks are great ways to get preschoolers engaged. Stacking items help preschoolers increase their eye-hand coordination and sorting is a prerequisite for greater math concepts.
- Having picture cards that show how to make sandwiches is one way to help a preschoolers learn to follow directions and answer how questions. I get a lot of pictures from istockphoto dont com or other stock photography sites. I don’t pay for them, as I am not using them commercially, I just print them out. The images come with the site logo on them which is fine. Most of these sites have really good search engines and you can find just about anything that you are looking for by simply browsing their selection.
- Painting with pudding or yogurt colored with food coloring are fun and inexpensive.
- Making edible dough allows children to learn about measurements and chemical compounds. Afterward, you can create shapes using cookie cutters, bake and paint them.
- For more info on the different types of learners:
Ideas to Get Preschoolers Moving:
Games that require movement can be fun, provide lessons in following directions, improve gross motor skills, and provide exercise. Using
music, parents and instructors can have children mimic animals, learning the days of the week, cleaning up their centers, learning about the five senses, etc. My son’s preschool teacher sang all the time and it really caught the attention of the kids. They seemed to absorb the information faster and retain it longer. Many musical games or lessons are capable of advanced variations making them more complex as children gain balance and coordination.
Using music will encourage movement and using upbeat and simple music may help set the mood for your preschooler. Stay away from chaotic or harsh music though. Studies have shown that they may alter their brain structure.
Creative Math Ideas:
Preschool learning should be fun. Scavenger hunts help to develop critical thinking and counting skills. Gather plastic animals, insects, fish, or toy cars and hide them in a space that is safe and familiar to the children. Give them a card with a specific number of these objects on it
that are hidden. The child searches for however many objects are on the card. This is a fun game that can be played either inside or outside.
Sorting is an easy task that can be employed when doing daily chores. Putting clean laundry into piles helps to get the job done while helping a child learn to sort by shape and item. Washcloths are a similar shape to dishtowels but they are different. Socks can be sorted by color or size.
Finding other creative preschool ideas that can help with household chores are easy. Setting the table, counting silverware and cups, counting their toys when straightening up and even counting envelopes when the mail is delivered are all ways to educate your little ones. Combining learning with fun will help you to come up with preschool ideas that help a child expand their world, vocabulary, skills, and confidence.