Conversation Hearts can be used for many things that encourage learning in an early childhood environment!
Try these activities for added learning during February:
- Give each child a box of conversation hearts and have them sort them by color.
- After sorting, have the children create a pattern using what colors they prefer.
- Use a grid to graph the colors of hearts.
- Hold up a jar of conversation hearts. Ask each child to estimate how many heart are in the jar. Write down their estimates. Count the actual amount and see who is closest.
- Play bingo using the hearts as markers.
- Place hearts in a variety of liquids (water, vinegar, milk, etc.). Ask children to predict which liquid will cause the hearts to dissolve first. Add baking soda and see what happens.
- Make your conversation hearts dance with this cool experiment.
- Give children one minute to see how many hearts they can stack on top of each other to make a tower.
- Have a heart relay race. One person from each team goes across the room to a bowl of hearts, scoops one heart out with a spoon, carries the spoon with the heart back to other side the room and drops it in a bowl. Teammates take turns until all hearts are transferred to bowl at starting line.
- Let children glue conversation hearts onto a frame, and put their picture in the frame for their families.
Here are some ideas for National Children’s Dental Health Month:
- Try painting with toothbrushes instead of paintbrushes.
- Give each child a tooth-shaped paper cut-out and have them do string painting using dental floss.
- Cut the bottoms off of large plastic soda bottles and turn them upside down (they look like teeth). Staple several together, and place in a sensory table. Spray them with shaving cream, and give children toothbrushes to brush them clean.
- Take a field trip to a local dentist office. Ask for donations to set up a dentist dramatic play area.
- Make a Happy Tooth/Sad Tooth graph. Give children grocery store ads, and have them cut out pictures of food. Place foods that are good for your teeth on a Happy Tooth chart and foods that are bad for your teeth on a Sad Tooth chart.
- Visit Crest’s Teaching Kids About Dental Health website.
Here are some ideas for Groundhog Day on February 2:
- The day before, create a graph about children’s guesses – Will the Groundhog see his shadow or not?
- Get a Ground Cookie Cutter and make Groundhog Cookies…or use the cookie cutter to dip in paint and make Groundhog prints.
- Add flashlights to the block area. Allow children to build towers, then create a shadow with the flashlight.
- Make a Groundhog Day Dirt Pie – Make a box of instant chocolate pudding, according to directions, and place into small bowls. Crush chocolate graham crackers squares (crush until it looks like fine crumbs or dirt) and sprinkle on top of the pudding in each bowl. Glue a small picture of a groundhog on a Popsicle stick. Place in the center of the bowl of pudding.
- Visit the Official Punxsutawney Groundhog Club Preschool Activities Page
Here are some ideas for National Puzzle Day on January 29:
- Take photographs of each child, cut into puzzle pieces and give pieces to another child. Have them guess who they have then put together the puzzle. Try one of these websites to make puzzles:
- Go on a Puzzle Hunt! Take puzzle pieces from a classroom puzzle and hide them throughout the room. Let children find the pieces then work together to put the puzzle together. If pieces are still missing, they will have to continue to hunt for them.
- Put old puzzle pieces in the sensory table.
- Make puzzle rubbings. Place puzzle pieces under a sheet of paper. Using the side of a crayon, rub the puzzle shape.
- Make a puzzle piece picture frame. Put children’s pictures in their frame for a parent gift.
Here are some ideas for Opposite Day on January 25:
- Have children wear summer clothes. Or ask children to wear clothes inside out and backward.
- Eat dinner foods for breakfast. Eat breakfast foods for lunch.
- Play Simon Says, but have children perform opposite tasks of what is suggested (ie. Simon Says Shake your hands very fast = children shake hands very slow).
- Fill one bucket with warm water and one with ice water. Have your children stick one hand in each bucket and experience the difference.
- Sorting! Ask children to find any toy in the room. Sort the toys by large/small. Think of other categories to sort.
- Float and Sink. Have children find one item in the room. Conduct a float/sink experiment, by asking children to place their item in a tub of water. Sort by whether the item floats or sinks.
The Early Childhood Academy is up and running!
We have three 1-hour classes as part of our Learning Styles series. Each classes focuses on characteristics of each learning style, such as how they learn and the types of materials to use to aid in learning. Participants will also learn how to plan curricular activities and lessons to meet the needs of each type of learner in their early childhood program.
Click link(s) below to enroll now. Start right away and print your certificate at the end of the class.
Lesson and Activity Planning for Visual Learners
Lesson and Activity Planning for Auditory Learners
Lesson and Activity Planning for Kinesthetic Learners