Pre-K activities, learning games, crafts, and printables


Cognitive development

Your daily activities help cognitive development both consciously and unconsciously. Whether children use logic to sort, classify, or create patterns, or creativity and language to acquire new knowledge, I hope to help you diversify your activities by breaking down this aspect of development. Here is a list of its components which includes clear and simple examples.

  • Sorting: the ability to divide and group objects according to precise criteria. Color, size, and shape are common criteria.

  • Classification: the ability to create groups or families with sub-categories. For example, classifying toys could mean dividing them into two groups, indoor toys and outdoor toys. Food can be classified according to the four food groups.

  • Creating series: the ability to create logical series. For example, objects can be placed in ascending or descending order, stories can be recreated, etc.

  • Creativity: the capacity to imagine. Inventing stories and finding solutions are great examples.

  • Acquisition of new knowledge: learning to count, recognizing colours, etc.

Here are activity suggestions and the material required to develop this sphere:



  • Rhymes
  • Telling stories and asking questions afterwards
  • Constantly speaking to babies. Describing your every move.
  • Initiate interaction by imitating babies' sounds
  • Play explorer. Reproduce familiar sounds such as animals.
  • Invent stories with children
  • Visit the library
  • Refer to books to answer children's specific questions about a subject
  • Memory game
  • Find rhyming words
  • Invite a guest to speak about his/her profession


  • Poster
  • Photo album
  • Tape recorder
  • Surprise box
  • Calendar
  • Audio cassettes or CD's
  • Puzzles
  • Chalk
  • Pencils and crayons of all kinds
  • Clock
  • Picture book
  • Musical instruments
  • Construction or building games
  • Dominoes
  • Board games
  • Manipulation games (Mr. Potato Head, lacing, etc.)
  • Sound games
  • Plastic, felt, or cardboard letters
  • Books
  • Typewriter or computer keyboard
  • Puppets
  • Material to create patterns
  • Objects which fit into each other
  • Craft material
  • Recycled material (toilet paper roll, Kleenex boxes, etc.)
  • Scientific material
  • Computer science material (CD-Roms, Internet, etc.)
  • Objects which can be used to pour and transfer from one container to another
  • Computer
  • Modeling dough
  • Paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Pictures
  • Magazines and catalogues
  • Chalkboard
  • Telephone (real or pretend)


My goal is not to give you an exhaustive course about this sphere of development but I hope to give you tools to better understand it. I feel this can be helpful for planning your activities and give you ideas. To begin, here is a breakdown of psychomotor development:

  • Sensorial and perceptive organization: the five senses. Touch, taste, smell, hearing, and seeing.
  • Global motor skills: posture, non-locomotor movement (throwing a ball), locomotor movement (running and jumping).
  • Fine motor skills: activities which solicit small muscles in the hands (drawing, lacing, buttoning, etc.)
  • Prehension: capacity to seize objects with our hands.
  • Lateralization: involves the two sides of the body (left and right).
  • Temporal and spatial organization: capacity to orient oneself in space and in time (near and far, present and future).
  • Dissociation: moving only one part of the body at a time with a great deal of control (only your index finger for example).
  • Coordination: a series of movements a child is able to perform (ride a bicycle, pedal, and hold the handlebars).
  • Muscle tone: capacity to contract and relax muscles.
  • Balance: hold a stable position for a few seconds.

Once again, here are two lists which can be very useful.



  • Obstacle courses
  • Ball games (rolling and throwing)
  • Playground
  • Different types of races (backwards, with obstacles, relay, etc.)
  • Dancing
  • Imitating animals
  • Walking on hiking trails or pedestrian paths
  • Building blocks
  • Crafts
  • Naming body parts
  • Tag
  • Stop and start games (statue, musical chairs, Simon says, etc.)
  • Exploration games (hide different objects in sand, mud, Jell-O, etc.)
  • Hide and seek
  • Hopscotch
  • Treasure hunt


  • Water table
  • Sandbox
  • Balls
  • Jumping ball
  • Blocks (different sizes)
  • Various sizes of cardboard boxes
  • Trucks
  • Hoola hoops
  • Jumping ropes
  • Large vehicles which can be pushed, pulled, or rode upon
  • Pull toys
  • Water or sand toys (shovel, bucket, moulds, etc.)
  • Stacking toys
  • Lacing toys
  • Mirror
  • Different sizes of containers with screw-on covers
  • Parachute
  • Small cars
  • Bowling game
  • Bubble solution and wand
  • Psychomotor structure for climbing (ladder, slide, etc.)
  • Tunnel
  • Scissors
  • Modeling dough
  • Finger painting
  • Crayons, chalk


Thank you to Geneviève Beaudet for her precious collaboration for this text.




Educatall team


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