Activities for toddlers and babies
Many sounds are associated with Christmas. Explore these sounds with little ones through this theme's activities.
Print pictures of Christmas bells, Santa Claus, Christmas carolers, etc. Display them on the walls of your daycare.
ROUTINES AND TRANSITIONS
To present your theme to babies and toddlers, fill several different Christmas stockings with rattles or musical toys and set them on the floor before they arrive in the morning. Let children explore the stockings. They will enjoy emptying them, playing with the various items, and sliding them back in the stockings again and again.
Musical snow globe
You will need a musical snow globe. Set it in the centre of the table at lunch time. Children will love observing the snow globe as they eat their meal.
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (hear)
Hang several different wind chimes from the ceiling. If possible, use Christmas-themed wind chimes. Have fun walking around the daycare and moving the wind chimes ever so gently so children can hear their pretty sounds.
Wind chime for diaper changes
This is a variation of the previous activity. Hang a wind chime from the ceiling, over your changing table. Move the wind chime gently during diaper changes. Attach a long piece of fabric elastic to the wind chime. Encourage children to pull on the elastic when they are lying on your changing table. They will love hearing the wind chime's sound.
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (hear and touch)
Sound exploration bottles
Fill empty plastic bottles with different items related to your theme. You can, for example, use tiny bells and green and red glitter. Seal the cap of each bottle with hot glue and encourage children to shake the bottles to hear the bells.
ARTS & CRAFTS
Colourful sound bottles
Insert glass marbles in empty plastic water bottles. Add red and white paint or, if you prefer, green and white paint. Seal the cap of each bottle with hot glue. Encourage babies and toddlers to manipulate the bottles to discover a new sound. They will also appreciate watching the colors mix together.
Group project and Christmas music
Select Christmas music you particularly like. Stick a large piece of white paper on a wall. Provide markers, waxed crayons, or wooden colored pencils (depending on the ages of the children in your group). Let them draw on the paper as they wish while listening to Christmas music.
MORAL AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
Set several dolls and stuffed animals on the floor of your daycare along with baby blankets. Wrap each doll and each stuffed animal in a blanket and invite babies and toddlers to rock them as they listen to a Christmas-themed lullaby. If you prefer, you can also sing to the dolls and stuffed animals with your group.
Christmas songs from around the world
Invite parents of other nationalities to write the lyrics of a Christmas song or sing in a different language for your group. You can also purchase a CD of Christmas songs from around the world.
This activity is great for exploring cause and effect. Purchase or recycle a musical Christmas card. Laminate both sides of the card. You can glue Christmas-themed pictures on both sides of the card. Let children manipulate the card during diaper changes. They will love opening and closing the card repeatedly to listen to the melody.
Hunt and seek
Here are a few activities that will help you play with object permanence. They require a Christmas snow globe.
- Hide your snow globe under a blanket. Help children notice the sound. Wait for them to lift the blanket to see the snow globe.
- Set several blankets on the floor. Place your Christmas snow globe under one of the blankets. Encourage toddlers to move about and lift the blankets to find the snow globe.
- Hide your snow globe within your daycare, making sure it is partially visible. Encourage children to follow the sound to find it.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
Set musical instruments or rattles in several boxes of different sizes. Wrap them with Christmas wrapping paper. Let children manipulate and shake the boxes. Encourage them to unwrap the boxes and play with the instruments.
Tiny bell bracelets
Attach bracelets with tiny Christmas bells to children's ankles or wrists. To the sound of Christmas music (or as you sing your favorite Christmas songs), dance around the daycare so children can hear the little bells.
Little Christmas stars
Provide Santa Claus hats and musical instruments. Pick a few simple Christmas songs and have fun singing them with your group. If you prefer, you can play a Christmas CD. Film the children in your group as they sing and dance. Send the video to parents. They will love sharing it with other family members during their Christmas celebrations.
Early childhood educator
Educatall.com is not responsible for the content of this article. The information mentioned in this article is the responsibility of the author. Educatall.com shall not be held responsible for any litigation or issues resulting from this article.