archive for the 'Fine Motor Skills' category

Feed the Squirrels Counting Activity

feed the squirrels counting activity
Every year I like to take my class out for a nature walk to observe the signs of fall. On these walks, we often come across a busy squirrel or two. This provides the perfect teaching opportunity about why squirrels gather and store nuts and seeds for the approaching winter. To extend this lesson I developed this entertaining counting game which teaches number sense.

Line the squirrels up in a row, and provide the children with a pile of acorns. Then instruct them to place the correct number of acorns (the amount that corresponds to the number on the squirrel’s tail) in the cup. As children pick up and place each acorn, have them state the correct number. In doing so, they will strengthen their one-to one-correspondence skills. When all the acorns have been correctly placed, ask the students if they would like to count all the squirrels. This will increase their ability to count to 10 in an accurate sequence.

feed the squirrels counting activity

This game also helps to strengthen fine motor skills. As an added challenge, tweezers and tongs can be used to pick up the acorns.

I have found this activity to be very popular with the majority of my class. I hope that you find that your students enjoy it as well.

MATERIALS USED:

– Cardstock
– Plastic cups
Our numbered squirrels
Googly eyes
– Bird seed (filler for cups)
– Stapler
Faux acorns
– Tweezers and tongs (if desired)



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Spooky Halloween Sensory Bin

spooky halloween sensory bin

This Halloween sensory bin is made of just a little bit of spooky and a whole lot of fun!

Children learn best by using their senses. Tubs filled with a variety of substances and materials enable young ones to use those senses to explore things that capture their attention. As they manipulate the objects, they are seeing, touching, smelling, and hearing. This allows them to collect information and make discoveries, which leads to the practice of many learning concepts.

spooky halloween sensory bin

Young learners build language, social emotional, and problem solving skills as they work alongside their peers to delve into the bin’s contents. They increase their math skills by counting, sorting, and classifying different elements. Quantity comparisons are also made as they decipher who has more “spiders” or “rocks” in their “cauldrons”. Additionally, scooping, pouring, and picking up different items helps to strengthen fine motor skills and eye-hand coordination.

Without a doubt, sensory bins are one of the best hands-on learning tools. So hurry and gather up a container and some spooky goodies!

MATERIALS USED:

– Any suitable container
– Aquarium gravel
Pom poms
Halloween buttons/embellishments
– Sequins
Mini candy cauldrons
Large googly eyes
Plastic spiders, bats, snakes, centipedes, skeletons
Halloween bouncy balls
– Plastic spoons



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Popcorn Fall Tree Craft

fall popcorn trees

Everybody loves the beauty of fall leaves. Happily, there are many wonderful books written on this subject for preschoolers. One of my favorites is Mouse’s First Fall by Lauren Thompson. The story tells of Mouse and his sister Minka’s journey outside on a cool fall day. They discover leaves of all colors and all shapes and sizes. Mouse learns about all the different experiences the fall season can bring.

fall popcorn trees

After listening to the book, my class is always excited to make their own fall trees. Each child is provided with a tree trunk that has been glued onto a piece of paper and a variety of colored popcorn. The popcorn is colored beforehand with powder tempera paint. The easiest method is to put the paint in a baggie, add the popcorn, and then shake it up until it’s coated. I only had orange, red, and yellow, but purple, green, and brown also make beautiful trees. I then prompt the children to glue their “leaves” onto the tree. This activity encourages creative expression, provides color recognition practice, and strengthens fine motor skills.

fall popcorn trees

MATERIALS USED:

– Construction paper
– Popcorn
Ziploc Storage Bags Gallon, 75 Count
– Powder tempera paint ( I only had orange, red and yellow, but purple, green, and brown also make beautiful trees).
– Glue
– Scissors
– Our free tree template



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