For this theme, transform your circle time by setting colorful rocks around your area to represent a lake. Invite children to sit on the rocks for your discussion period. To greet children in the morning, dress up as a fisherman. Present a variety of fishing accessories and encourage children to observe and manipulate them.
CIRCLE TIME QUESTIONS
- Have you ever gone fishing?
- Have you ever caught a fish?
- Do you like to eat fish?
- Do you have an aquarium at home?
- Can you name tools and accessories that are needed for fishing?
- What must we wear to stay safe when we go fishing?
(Open educa-decorate-Fishing) Print, cut out, and laminate. Decorate the walls of your daycare and hang decorations from the ceiling to set the mood for the theme.
(Open garland-Fish) Print and let children decorate the garland. Cut out the items and hang it within your daycare or near your daycare entrance.
Hang plastic fish from the ceiling in your daycare.
Hang a large paper banner on a wall and let children create a “fishing” scene and stories throughout the week.
The pictures may be used as a memory game or to spark a conversation with the group. Use them to decorate the daycare or a specific thematic corner. (Open picture game-Fishing) Print, laminate, and store in a “Ziploc” bag or in your thematic bins.
(Open writing activities-F like fishing) Print for each child or laminate and use with a dry-erase marker.
(Open stationery-Fishing) Print. Use the stationery to communicate with parents, in your writing corner, or to identify your thematic bins.
Activity sheets are provided for each theme. Print and follow instructions. (Open activity sheets-Fishing)
(Open educa-nuudles-Fishing) Print for each child. Have children color the sheet and use Magic Nuudles to give it a three-dimensional look. Variation: You don’t have Magic Nuudles? Have children fill the spaces designed for Magic Nuudles with bingo markers or stickers. To order Magic Nuudles.
Use the flashcards to spark a conversation with your group, in your reading and writing corner, or to identify your thematic bins. (Open word flashcards-Fishing) (Open giant word flashcards-Fishing) worm, fishing rod, hook, rowboat, life jacket, buoy, net, cooler, reel, cottage, canoe, fish
(Open felt board-Fishing) Print the various items and glue them on felt. Press four pieces of black felt on a large piece of cardboard and display your felt board on a wall. Children will enjoy pressing the felt shapes on the board to create stories.
Have fun with these wonderful workshop ideas created by Caroline Allard.
Construction and building blocks:
- Glue several pieces of blue cardboard together on the floor to represent a lake or ocean. Next, using building blocks, encourage children to build submarines or boats that sank to the bottom of the body of water.
- Use a small inflatable or plastic pool and invite children to build structures inside it. You can fill the pool with sand and let children build sandcastles.
- Boats and other means of transportation linked to water.
- Fabric pieces that can be used to represent sails.
- Plastic fish and marine animals that can be purchased at the dollar store or in big-box stores.
- Cut fish shapes out of yellow, green, and red pieces of construction paper. Glue them on bins and have children sort blocks, adding the red ones to the bin with the red fish on it, the blue ones to the bin with the blue fish on it, etc.
- Create a scale model of marine life using LEGO blocks.
Arts & crafts:
- Add salt or sand to your poster paint to create a special effect.
- Provide liquid glue (to be applied with a small paintbrush) and a small container filled with sand. Have children use the glue to draw designs on construction paper. When they are done, they can press their work on the sand to see them appear.
- Goldfish crackers that can be glued on blue paper.
- Press bubble wrap in poster paint and then on paper or cardboard fish shapes to represent scales.
- Coloring pages representing fish or other sea creatures.
- Fish-shaped stencils.
- One child draws part of a fish then passes it to the child next to him who continues drawing details and so on.
- Fisherman kit: rubber boots, a hat, a checkered vest, a raincoat, a fishing rod, a fishing kit, an inflatable rowboat or a cardboard box to represent a boat, oars, etc.
- Diver: fins, a mask, snorkel, bathing suit, swimming hat, diving goggles, oxygen tank (2-liter soda bottle), etc.
- Use blue and green electrical tape to delimit your area and represent a body of water.
- Hang a bed sheet in front of a light and use cardboard shapes to represent fish, seaweed, crabs, etc.
- Puzzles involving fishing, sea creatures, marine life, etc.
- A box filled with seashells, a large seashell children can use to “listen” to the waves.
- Clear plastic bottles filled with “ocean-colored” items (different shades of blue).
- Create a simple fishing game by sliding paperclips on construction paper fish and attaching a magnet to a wooden stick to represent a fishing rod.
- A memory game involving pictures of fish or other marine animals.
- A Lite-Brite or MagnaDoodle game for creating fish.
- Play relaxing music in your area (ocean, dolphin, or whale sounds).
- Picture books about all kinds of fish.
- Hunt and seek games.
- Various activity sheets related to the theme.
- Games involving educatall word flashcards.
- Tracing and maze activity sheets.
- Laminated pictures of fish that children can trace with dry-erase markers.
Motor skills :
- Create an obstacle course and invite children to pretend they are swimming from one end to the other. You can have them “catch” fish as they move along the course.
- Water games.
- Set exercise mats on the floor and have children slither like eels. Encourage them to mimic different types of fish.
- Draw two parallel lines of the floor using masking tape. Set construction paper fish between these two lines and encourage children to cross from one side to the other without touching the fish.
- Set three bins in different areas of your daycare (one next to you, one in the centre of the room, and one at the opposite end). Fill the bins with water. Provide small plastic fish that children must try to toss into the bins. This activity can also be done outside.
Sensory bins :
- A water table with tiny aquarium pebbles. If you wish, you could also use an actual aquarium or a clear plastic container. Simply add a few rocks and plastic aquatic plants. Let children play in the water with plastic fish.
- Fill a container with textured blue items (Jell-O, hair gel, etc.). Let children fill and empty different containers with the bin’s contents. You can also provide a variety of utensils and kitchen tools. This can by somewhat messy, but children will love it!
- Fill a bin with mud to represent a marsh. Add plastic fish and frogs and let children play in the mud.
- Fill a container with soapy water and several bubble-making accessories.
- Let children play in a water table. Add small boats, plastic fish, items that float, etc.
- Fish-shaped cookies.
- Different salmon or tuna recipes (beware of allergies).
- Diving mask. You will need a small empty yogurt container. Cut the bottom off and secure plastic wrap over this section. Invite children to use it to observe the bottom of your aquarium. Do they see differently?
ROUTINES AND TRANSITIONS
Game-This is my spot-Fishing
(Open game-This is my spot-Fishing) Print each illustration twice. Using adhesive paper, press one copy of each illustration on the table. Insert the other set of illustrations in an opaque bag. Children take turns picking an illustration to determine their spot at the table for the day. You can also use the illustrations for naptime spots or your task train.
My rock path
(Open colorful rocks) Print, laminate, and deposit the illustrations on the floor to create a path leading to various locations within the daycare. The path can lead to areas children visit regularly throughout the day such as the bathroom and the cloakroom. It may also be used to delimit various workshops.
ACTIVITIES FOR BABIES
Blow bubbles and encourage children to run after them and pop them.
(Open mobile-Fish) Print. To make your mobile, you can use wooden sticks, a clothes hanger, or branches. Simply cut out the items, use a hole-punch to make a hole at the top of each one and thread a piece of fishing wire through so you can hang them from your support.
Fill a kiddie pool with colorful balls and hide plastic fish among the balls. Babies will love digging the fish out.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
(Open game-Fish) Print. Simply display the fish on a wall or fence. Blindfolded, children try to press their fin as close to the correct spot as possible.
Forest obstacle course
Use adhesive tape to delimit a start and finish line. Arrange leaves on the floor, on the start line. Give each child a drinking straw or an empty toilet paper roll they can blow through to move their leaf towards the finish line. After a while, you can add obstacles such as chairs, bowling pins, naptime mattresses, etc.
Big fish, little fish
Cut several different sizes of fish out of construction paper or cardboard. (Open models-Fish) Slide a paperclip on each fish to represent its mouth. Attach a magnet to the end of a string and wrap the other end around a stick to represent a fishing rod. Set two baskets on the floor: one for big fish and one for small fish. Children take turns catching a fish and dropping it in the correct basket.
Invite children to perform somersaults on exercise mats.
(Open colored fish) Print and laminate several copies. For this activity, you will need a parachute or blanket. Each child holds the parachute. Set the fish in the center. When you give the signal, children must make waves by moving the parachute up and down. Eventually, the fish will be flying.
Where are the fish?
(Open colored fish) Print and laminate. Before children arrive in the morning, hide fish throughout your yard. Invite them to search for the fish.
Oops, I lost my fish!
(Open colored fish) Print and laminate. Make a tiny hole at the top of each fish and thread a piece of yarn through, long enough so that, when you insert the other end of the yarn in the back of a children’s pants, the fish touch the floor. The object of the game is for children to step on their peers’ fish to “catch” them.
The fisherman and the fish
Select one child who will be the fisherman. The other children will be fish. When you give the signal, the fish run away to avoid being caught by the fisherman. As soon as a fish is touched by the fisherman, he becomes a fisherman too and helps catch the remaining fish. The game ends when there are no more fish.
The fish and the minnow
Along the lines of the cat and mouse game, select one player who will be the fish. He must try to catch the minnows (other children). Every time a child is touched by a fish, he becomes a fish too. Note that the minnows can escape being caught by the fish by lying down on the floor or getting down on their knees.
Divide your group into two teams. You must determine a start and finish line. Children from each team stand in line, on the start line. The first player from each team must run to the chair that is set on the finish line, and sit on it. Once a child is seated, hand him a jelly fish. The child must eat and swallow it completely before running back to the start line to tag the next child in line. Keep going down the line. The first team that finishes wins the fish race.
If the weather is nice, draw a giant fish-shaped hopscotch grid in your yard. Divide a fish shape into 10 boxes containing numbers 1 to 10. Children take turns tossing a pebble on your fish-shaped hopscotch and hopping in the squares on alternating feet, counting as they move along. They must pick up the pebble before turning around and going back to number 1.
MUSICAL AND RHYTHMIC ACTIVITIES
The musical fish
As in musical chairs, to the sound of music, children pass a stuffed animal fish around the circle. When the music stops, the child holding the fish must make a fish face.
Set three hula hoops in a line, on the floor (or trace three circles using rope). Children stand around the outside of the hula hoops. To the sound of music, they must hop in the hula hoops. When the music stops, if a child is inside a hula hoop, he must briefly mimic a fish.
Have children sit on a naptime mattress with a partner. Play music and encourage children to rock from side to side per the rhythm, as if they were in canoes.
Educ-same and different-Fishing
(Open educ-same and different-Fishing) Print and laminate for durable, eco-friendly use. Children must circle the item that is different in each row.
Hunt and seek-Poni is fishing
(Open hunt and seek-Poni is fishing) Print and laminate. Children pick a card and search for the item in the scene.
(Open educ-math-Fishing) Print and laminate for durable, eco-friendly use. Children must count the objects in each rectangle and circle the corresponding number.
Cut a fish shape out of tissue paper for each child. Determine a start and finish line. When you give the signal, children, who are lined up on the start line, must blow on their fish to move it towards the finish line. This activity can have a calming effect on children.
Play the silent game. When you give the signal, everyone must stop talking and be silent, like fish in water. When a child makes a sound, he is eliminated. Keep playing until all the children in your group have spoken or made a sound.
I hear sounds in the forest
Have children lie down on the floor and close their eyes. Produce different sounds and invite children to try to identify them. You can, for example, tap on a wall, snap your fingers, break a tree branch, crumple a dried leaf, whistle, tap your foot, make a bear sound, mimic a mouse sound, etc.
MORAL AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
Set old bed sheets on top of furniture items to repesent cabins. Let children play in these improvised cabins with flashlights.
(Open puppets-Fish) Print. Let children choose and color their puppet. Glue a Popsicle stick behind each fish and encourage children to use their fish puppet to invent stories.
Like a fish in water
Have children wear their rubber boots and their raincoat and go play in the puddles on a rainy day.
I am going on a fishing trip, and I am packing…
Sit in a circle with your group. Begin the game by saying, “I am going on a fishing trip, and I am packing (for example a flashlight).” The child next to you must repeat this sentence and add another item (ex. a tent). Children must repeat all the items mentioned by those before them and add one of their own.
This activity is perfect for a hot summer day. Collect items that float and others that sink. Children will have fun guessing if they will float or sink before dropping them in a kiddie pool or bin filled with water.
Collect worms with your group and store them in a container that has a lid. Wash the worms under water. Dip each one in a different color poster paint before dropping it on a large piece of paper. As the worms wiggle around, they will “paint” unique designs. This represents an unforgettable experience for children! Of course, you could also purchase worms at a local fishing store.
Give each child a small plate containing a dollop of Cheez Whiz, a few pretzel sticks and Goldfish crackers. Show children how they can press the pretzel sticks in the Cheez Whiz and then use the cheese preparation to “catch” a fish cracker. What a fun snack!
The fish in the lake
Add blue food coloring to cream cheese to represent water. Have children spread the blue cream cheese on round crackers using plastic knives. They will look like tiny lakes. Finally, they can press fish-shaped crackers on top.
Let’s go fishing
Give each child a wooden skewer. Attach a piece of black licorice to one end and knot the opposite end of the licorice around a jelly worm to represent a fishing rod.
A fishy feast
Serve different types of fish for lunch.
Blue Jell-O bin
Fill a bin with blue Jell-O and let children play in it with their bare hands. Add tiny plastic fish to the bottom of the bin. Children will enjoy catching them.
ARTS & CRAFTS
My lake (or my aquarium)
You will need a resealable bag (Ziploc bag) for each child. Ask children to cut tiny fish shapes out of Fun Foam sheets. They can add them to their bag along with blue or green shampoo. Seal the bags. Give each child a paper plate and help them remove the center. They can color them to represent a lake’s shoreline. Children can glue their bag in the center and display their lake in a window.
(Open models-Fish) Print and cut out. You will need bubble wrap. Have children cut a fish shape out of heavy cardboard. Once they have painted the bubble wrap with red paint, have them press their fish on it to see scales appear. Once the paint is dry, they can add a wiggly eye to complete their fish.
Build rowboats out of large cardboard boxes. Let children paint the rowboats as they wish. Set blue shower curtains on the floor to represent water and set the rowboats on top. Children will love sitting in their rowboats. Provide swimming pool noodles they can use as oars. Provide fishing rods and let them pretend they are fishermen.
(Open model-fly swatter) Cut a 30 cm x 10 cm piece of heavy cardboard for each child. Cut two oval halves out of construction paper or rubber drawer liners. Glue both oval halves together, at one end of the piece of cardboard. Let children paint and decorate their fly swatters as they wish.
Stained glass fish
Grate old waxed crayons, dividing colors. Let children drop wax shavings on a piece of waxed paper. Set a second piece of waxed paper on top and use an iron (low heat) to seal both pieces. Cut a fish shape out of the waxed paper and hang it in a sunny window.
Trace a large fish shape on a piece of paper. Fill it with white glue and have children press colorful aquarium pebbles all over it. If you prefer, draw a smaller fish for each child and have them display their work on a large piece of blue paper to represent an aquarium.
(Open models-Big fish) Print and use the models to trace fish shapes on construction paper or felt. You will need two identical shapes for each fish. Use a stapler or hot glue to glue them one on top of the other, leaving an opening at the top. Have children stuff the fish with newspaper, tissues, tissue paper, etc. When they are done, staple or glue the opening closed. Children can add wiggly eyes and sequins to represent scales.
Give each child a paper or Styrofoam plate. Using scissors, remove approximately one quarter of the plate. The opening will represent a fish mouth. Children can glue the removed piece on the other side of their fish, to represent its tail. They can glue torn pieces of construction paper all over their fish to represent scales. Finally, they can add a wiggly eye to complete their fish.
Cut a potato in half. Use a knife to cut a fish shape, removing the contour to create a stamper. Let children press the shapes in paint and then use it to make impressions on paper.
Trace each child’s hand horizontally on a piece of paper. Their fingers must be pressed together and their thumb must be pointing away, separate from the other fingers. It will represent a fin. Let children cut out and decorate their fish.
(Open coloring pages theme-Fishing) Print for each child.
(Open creative coloring-Fishing) Print for each child. Children must draw fish to complete the scene.
(Open scrapbook-Fishing) Print this new page for each child. Insert it in their scrapbook once it has been completed. Children can draw memories of when they went fishing with family members or activities they enjoyed during the theme.
SONGS & RHYMES
(Open songs & rhymes-Fishing) Print.
By: Patricia Morrison
I went fishing
Fishing at the lake
I cast my line
And waited patiently
Sitting in my rowboat
It was getting late
But my oh my
It was worth the wait
A great big fish started
Gnawing on my bait
I reeled him in
And brought it home to bake
The educatall team