Winter Theme
Page 3


Theme Ideas

WINTER CENTERS

Building Area

Encourage children to make homes for winter animal toys, such as penguins, polar bears, and seals that you put into the area. Provide white Styrofoam shapes to use as icy building blocks. Styrofoam packing pieces can serve as snow for toy construction vehicles to load, push, plow, and dump.

Manipulative Area

Knead iridescent glitter into white play dough for a glistening, snowy effect. Provide a snowman cookie cutter or a round cutter that children can use to create their ownsnowman forms. Set out a variety of decorative items, such as colored aquarium rocks and twigs, for embellishing the snow figures. Add winter puzzles to the area, along with an assortment of white beads and white laces for stringing.

Housekeeping Area

Add plenty of winter dress-up clothes and accessories. If your area is large enough, consider dividing it in half. On one side create an outdoor scene by covering the floor with a white sheet. Add a sled; a small, artificial tree; and some sock snowballs. On the other side, arrange the furniture cozily around an imitation fireplace made by covering the back of a bookshelf with brick-patterned background paper. Stock the kitchen with warm foods and the cookware needed to prepare them-such as plastic mugs, spoons, a container of hot cocoa, a kettle, soup cans, bowls, pots, and a Thermos.

Art Center

Add lots of white materials, such as doilies, cotton balls, coffee liners, dried beans, felt, yarn, Styrofoam, and tissue paper for interesting texture collages.

Sand/Water Table

Fill the table with crushed ice, white confetti, or mounds of shaving cream. Let little ones explore using shovels and buckets.

~Submitted by Sherry in Ontario

Ice Skating

Give each child 2 sheets of wax paper. Show children, by placing the wax paper under their shoes, how they can "skate" on the carpet. (Be sure to try it yourself! Tons of fun!) To avoid over crowding, draw a chalk circle on the carpet in the center of the room to represent the "Ice Rink. Choose 4 or 5 children to skate on the ice rink. Play music as they skate and allow them to choose new skaters when the music stops.

~Submitted by Cheryl's Sweethearts Childcare

Driving On Ice

Fill three jellyroll pans with water and freeze the day before this activity is planned. Gather small match-box car, spoons, salt and sand. Have children try to drive the cars over the ice. What Happens? Spoon salt over one sheet of ice and sand over another. What happens when the children try to drive the cars over these surfaces? What implications can be drawn for driving on ice. The kids love this activity!

~Submitted by Cheryl's Sweethearts Childcare

Signs of Winter

Have your children help you look for signs of winter where you live. Examples: Weather: Cold weather brings ice and snow. Daylight is short. Sometimes it is still dark when we get up in the morning. Plants and Animals: All but the evergreen trees are bare. Many animals are gone, some flying south and some hibernating. The fur of some animals changes colour to camouflage them in the snow. People: We wear heavier clothing. We take out our gloves, boats, and hats. We play inside more. Many people have fires in their fireplaces. We play in the snow and must shovel our walkways.

~Submitted by Cheryl's Sweethearts ChildCare

Skating

You and your children can pretend to join some winter skaters, skating on a frozen pond. Let the children skate around the room. Have the children take off their shoes and put on their make-believe skates. Play some waltz music and have the skates glide in time to the music.

~Submitted by Cheryl's Sweethearts ChildCare

Sounds of Winter

Go on a winter walk. Listen for sounds of winter. Examples: boots crunching in snow, rain splashing, wind whistling, An interesting aspect of winter sounds in the relative lack of sounds.Many birds are gone and snow makes the world seem more quiet.

~Submitted by Cheryl's Sweethearts ChildCare
Winter Lacing Cards

Cut colored posterboard into a winter shape (snowflake, snowman, mitten, hat) and punch holes around the edges. Them let your child lace yarn or a shoestring into the cards.


Winter Shape Match Up

There are many ways to set this up depending on the skill level or the particular skill you wish to work on. Try these different set ups: (Use your own Winter Shapes... mitten, hat, snowflake, etc)
---Cut out Winter Shapes from different colors of paper. Give each child one Winter Shape. Ask the children to find one person with the same color Winter Shape.
---Cut out Winter Shapes from different colors of paper. Cut the Winter Shapes in half using a puzzle type cut, like zig zag or interlocking pieces. Give each child one half of a Winter Shape, and ask them to find the person with the other half. Or Give the children two pieces and have the children make a circle, with one child that has one match on one side and the other match on the other side. You may end up with 2 or more circles depending on how the Winter Shape pieces are distributed.
---Cut out Winter Shapes from one color of paper. Cut the Winter Shapes in half using a puzzle type cut, like zig zag or interlocking pieces. Give each child one half of a Winter Shape, and ask them to find the person with the other half. Or Give the children two pieces and have the children make a circle, with one child that has one match on one side and the other match on the other side. You may end up with 2 or more circles depending on how the Winter Shape pieces are distributed.
---Cut the Winter Shapes from one color of paper. Label one set of Winter Shapes with numbers, i.e. if you have 20 children, label the Winter Shapes with the numbers one to ten. The other half, draw one dot on one, two on another, and so on until ten. Give each child one Winter Shape and have them find the child with their match.
---Cut the Winter Shapes from one color of paper. Place matching stickers on two Winter Shapes. Give each child one Winter Shape and have them find the child with their match.
---Cut the Winter Shapes from one color of paper. Cut the Winter Shapes in half using a puzzle type cut, like zig zag or interlocking pieces. Place matching stickers on each half of a Winter Shape. Give each child one Winter Shape half and have them find the child with their match.
---Place matching Winter stickers on separate index cards. Give each child a card and ask them to find the child with their match.
---Try all the above, but in a file folder format. Glue one part of the Winter Shape to the file folder and laminate it's match.

Winter Shape Hop

Cut out large Winter shapes from colored paper. Laminate them and cut them out. Place them on the floor and ask the children to hop from one Shape to another. These may also be used at seat markers for group time.

Winter Activities

Ask your child what activities can be done in the summer, but not the winter. And vice versa.

Weather Doll

Make a felt weather doll. Encourage the children to dress and undress the doll according to the weather.

Here are four things that my kids love to do for "winter":

1.) We read "Frosty the Snowman" and then I made a large black hat like Frosty wears out of black poster board and then picked up some white stryrofoam balls for snowballs and we play "snowball toss"

2.) We also read "The Mitten" by Jan Brett, a wonderful book! I had made a huge white mitten out of felt and then collected a stuffed animal for every animal that is included in the story and as I read how the animals all crawled in the mitten I add a stuffed animal and at the end when we read that they all jumped out, I throw the mitten up and let all the stuffed animals fly. The kids just squeel!!

3.) I also collected pictures from magazines of the different seasons, more for winter. I put them in plastic to protect them and made a 3-ring binder type booklet with them. I then made cute little paper mittens and glued them to a popsicle stick. I have them sit down around me and then I show them a picture and ask them to wave their mitten sticks when I come to a picture that has "cold" weather for wich you would need mittens.

4.) We rent the book with audio cassette tape of the "Three Little Kittens", we listen to the story and then I hang a little clothesline up and I have made lots of sets of colorful mittens out of felt and they hang up there mittens to dry and we talk about the colors!

~Submitted by Sandy in MN

Winter Shape Fishing Game

Tie 3 feet of string to a wooden spoon. Attach a magnet to the end of the string. Cut and laminate many different colored, and Winter Shapes from construction paper (not too big though). Attach a paper clip to each Winter Shape. Spread the Winter Shapes on the floor and let your child try to catch the Winter Shape. Have them try to catch the star or the biggest tree. For a twist, label the Winter Shapes with letters or numbers.

Winter Shaped Games

The following games require you to cut out many different winters Shapes from construction paper. You may choose to laminate these Winter Shapes so they last longer.


Google
 


Links to other Winter theme sites!

See my Snow and Snowman Theme Page!
See my Mittens Theme Page!

Winter - A Child's Place
Winter/Snow - A to Z Teacher Stuff
Winter Stationary - abcTeach.com
Winter Craft Projects - About.com
Winter Party - Boardman's Birthday Party Ideas
Winter Poems - Can Teach
Winter Themed Math Pages - Crafts For kids
Winter Crafts - Danielle's Place
Winter Activities for Children - DLTK
Winter Olympics - Education World
Winter Theme - Everything Preschool
Winter Activities - First-School
Winter Theme - Gayle's Preschool Rainbow
Toboggan Game - Jack Frost
Winter Unit - K-Crew
Winter Books - Kids Domain
Winter - Perpetual Preschool


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