If you are looking for some unusual themes for preschool, there are plenty of great ideas. There is no reason to stick with just holidays or weather, as January gives lots of options for educating and entertaining preschoolers. Here are some January themes for preschool-
- January 5th is National Bird Day-Preschoolers are fascinated by birds and a unit about their feathered friends is sure to be a hit. There are lots of ways to introduce the unit with books and even video. Coupled along with these crafts and ideas, your preschoolers will be sure to be enthralled by birds of every feather!
Field trip-Many urban areas have bird aviaries that welcome classroom field trips. A quick search online could let you know if there is one your area. Your preschoolers will love to see the birds up close and personal. If a trip to a bird sanctuary is not possible, then an alternative may be a trip to a chick or duck farm. Many farmers are willing to let kids get up close and personal with their birds, with supervision of course.
Online coloring pages-All preschoolers love to color. There are several sites that offer free online coloring pages. Simply print off the pages of your choice set out the crayons and encourage the kids to get started.
Bird Alphabet-Birds can be introduced along with helping preschoolers learn their alphabet. Setting up a bird related alphabet is a great way to help kids learn about both. Whether you choose to decorate large letters or put up a picture to represent a letter, this can be a creative way to teach. Remember to keep it simple, yet interesting. A is for Albatross, B is for Bird, and C is for Chick, can make learning letters a lot more fun.
- January 29th is National Puzzle Day-Kids love to do puzzle, so why not design a theme about puzzles. There are plenty of ways to help you introduce the unit. Choose a puzzle book that will keep the interest of your preschoolers to begin the unit and then try these other projects.
Make your own puzzle-You can choose from a variety of mediums to be the base of your puzzle. Whether you use wooden blocks, craft foam, or just laminated cardstock, preschoolers will love to make a puzzle they can keep. Begin by having the kids color in a picture, or draw their own. If you are going to use a precut medium, for the base, they will need to help to cut and apply the pieces. If you are going to use laminate, you can simply laminate the picture and then have them cut it into large puzzle pieces. Backing the pieces with cardstock before laminating will help it to last longer.
Alphabet puzzle-Again you can combine teaching the alphabet with putting together a puzzle. A large alphabet puzzle could be assembled as you work your way through the alphabet and the puzzle unit. Or you can find several online alphabet puzzles for the kids to make themselves.
Puzzle mix and match-For older preschoolers (4&5 years old) it can be a fun activity to play puzzle mix and match. This works best if you can use wooden puzzles with large pieces. Simply pour out all the pieces to several different puzzles on a large rug. Give each child a puzzle base, or have them share if you don’t have enough, and have them look for the pieces that go to their base. They will gain puzzle skills, trying to fit in pieces, fine motor skills while sorting through pieces, and just have a lot of fun!
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