Preschool activities can be a challenge to come up with; you want something that will teach your kid a thing or two, but it should also be creative. And yes, the best preschool activities offer an exciting alternative to screen time (which, let’s face it, is a tall order these days!).
Snack MathFun game + snack = win! Cut paper into squares and write a number on each (starting with 1-5 for very little kids; you can add more later!) with the correlating amount of circles on each card. Then, count with your child as she adds fruit snacks, Cheerios, Goldfish crackers, or another favorite. Those who have a good grasp on their numbers can move on to basic addition and subtraction with the same setup.Photo: Fun-A-Day.com
Sticker NamesThis is the perfect age to practice letters and numbers before sending them off to Kindergarten, where they'll want to feel prepared. A simple sticker name project for preschoolers gets them used to the shapes of the letters in their name while strengthening fine motor skills. All you'll need are dot stickers, construction paper, and a thick, black marker.
Get the tutorial at BusyToddler.comPhoto: Busy Toddler
Color Scavenger HuntGot a curious preschooler on your hands? This is a super-easy and creative way to tap into that instinct while also exploring colors and learning about nature and/or found objects. A white paper bag and pack of markers is all you need to create their little scavenger hunt kit. Then, set out to find objects in the various colors you've scribbled on there. While this is a fun preschool activity for outside, you can do it indoors on a rainy day, too. Buttons, small toys, and snacks work just as well as flowers, sticks, and leaves. Have fun!Photo: I Heart Crafty Things
HopscotchThis DIY hopscotch game is one of the hands-down best activities for preschoolers. Not only is it fun and easy to set up together, but then the craft turns into a game they can use again and again. Hopscotch has a physical component which is great for the energetic ones, and this version can add a little activity to a rainy day inside. Also, it helps kiddos with coordination while letting them practice numbers and colors. Win-win-win!
YogaWhether your kiddo is go-go-go like mine, or prefers to be still, this is a wonderful age to introduce yoga. Preschool activities that build strength and confidence while keeping them focused and having fun? Definitely a positive. Even if you've never done yoga, you and your little one can start together. Check out some inspiration for animal-inspired yoga poses for kids here, and search YouTube for videos that you can do together.
Rainbow JarMy daughter is such a little scientist in the making -- she is absolutely in awe of anything that floats, puffs up, explodes, separates, and so on. Rainbow jars are a fun preschool activity that teaches them about density. Also, they turn out so pretty, your kids will be mesmerized. It's a slightly more involved project, but most of the items needed are things you probably have lying around the house.
Get the how-to at Playdough to PlatoPhoto: Playdough to Plato
Play TelephoneA good old-fashioned game of telephone is honestly one of my favorites. All you need is a piece of string and a couple of washed-out soup cans. My preschooler can't get enough of this game, which can be used to teach them about pitch, volume, and of course: the value of pausing for a moment to listen!
Photo: Getty Images
Go On SafariExploring comes naturally to little kids, so use the instinct with this fun and easy activity for preschoolers. Glue two toilet paper rolls together and have your preschooler paint them in camouflage colors. Cut a hole on either end to tie through with string or ribbon to create "binoculars." Then, use a disposable plastic bowl, pipe cleaner, and green tissue paper to fashion a little safari hat. Get outside and explore nature with your gear in place -- from rocks and sticks to creatures like squirrels, ants, and more.
Photo: Jenny Studenroth
Sensory BinsTo me, the best preschool activities are cheap and easy to put together. That's why I love sensory bins, a versatile project you can take inside or out. For kids who love to splash, you can set them up on the porch or sidewalk with water and things that float inside. The quieter, contemplative types will enjoy digging into bins of uncooked rice, beans, and so on to uncover cool things. Mostly Under Control gives a bunch of examples, all using items purchased at the dollar store. Dig in!Photo: Mostly Under Control
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