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


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Christmas is rapidly approaching

Christmas is without a doubt the most magical celebration of the year. We begin preparing for it several weeks in advance. Children's eyes begin to twinkle with anticipation and adults go from store to store, searching for the ideal gift for their little sweethearts.

 

As we get closer to Christmas Day, more and more houses are lit up with Christmas lights, and children get more and more excited for Santa Claus' visit. In the final weeks before Christmas, there are many activities that can make this period even more special for little ones. Not only do these activities make waiting for Christmas bearable, they also make this celebration more than just a single day of gift opening.

 

Throughout the month of December, here are activities for children of all ages.

 

0 to 6 months old:

  • Display bright pictures on a wall, near your changing table. Encourage children to admire them during diaper changes.
  • Make a mobile and hang it near your changing table. You may use Christmas illustrations that you have coloured or Christmas figurines such as angels or plastic ornaments. If there are older children in your group, involve them in the creation of your mobile.
  • Purchase bracelets complete with tiny bells or make your own by gluing tiny bells on a strip of fabric. Attach the bracelets on little ones' ankles or wrists. They will be intrigued by the sounds the bracelets will produce when they move.
  • Collect clear medicine bottles and fill them with water and red, green, or silver glitter. Secure the caps with hot glue. Pill bottles are light and easy for little hands to manipulate.
  • Give babies the opportunity to discover Christmas scents (cinnamon, cloves, mint, etc.). Fill small containers with these spices and punch holes in the lids.

6 to 12 months old:

  • Provide babies with pieces of multicoloured garlands and let them explore them. Children will be attracted to the bright colors. They will also enjoy manipulating different textures.
  • Add artificial snow to a clear bottle. You may also add water and glitter.
  • Sing Christmas songs. Children appreciate repetition. Do not hesitate to sing the same songs over and over again.
  • Recycle old shatterproof decorations that you no longer use. Deposit them in a plastic container and leave the container out for children to discover.
  • Keep scraps of wrapping paper and add them to a large bin. Wrapping paper is often colourful. The colors and different textures will intrigue little ones.
  • Fill a box with pinecones and pine tree branches. Babies will appreciate the textures and smells of these items. Give babies their pacifier to avoid choking hazards.

12 to 18 months old:

  • Pour artificial snow in a container. Add a variety of Christmas accessories. Babies really like the texture of artificial snow.
  • Make Christmas greeting cards with your group. Use Christmas coloring pages. Encourage children to color the items, cut them out, and glue them on their cards. Parents will be happy to receive a card made by their child and will most likely keep it for a very long time. Trace the contour of each child's hand in his/her card to represent a signature.
  • Make salt dough (2 cups of flour, 1 cup of salt, 1 cup of water). Roll out the dough and use cookie cutters to create Christmas shapes. Let dry. Once the shapes have hardened, let children paint them. If you wish to hang the shapes in your Christmas tree, use a drinking straw to make a tiny hole at the top of each shape before setting it out to dry. Thread a ribbon or string through the hole.
  • Hang Christmas lights in your naptime area or in your playroom.

18 to 24 months old:

  • Make Christmas ornaments. Use Styrofoam balls and glue tissue paper, glitter, pompoms, etc. all over. Insert a pipe cleaner in each ball to create a hook.
  • Make Christmas bells. Use empty fruit or applesauce cups. Turn them upside down and glue glitter, tissue paper, and other items all over. Stick a tiny bell inside the cups and add a pipe cleaner on top to complete your bells.
  • Cut a Christmas tree shape out of green construction paper for each child. Let them decorate their tree as they wish.
  • Paint large pinecones and glue a string or ribbon at the base of each one. They make magnificent Christmas tree decorations.

24 to 36 months old:

  • Use pictures to help children make their list for Santa. Simply ask them to cut or tear the items they would like to receive out of catalogues or flyers.
  • Use colourful pasta pieces to make garlands. Use rubbing alcohol and food coloring to dye pasta pieces. Thread them on a string and hang your garlands in your Christmas tree.
  • Make Christmas stockings. Trace Christmas stocking shapes on red construction paper and cut them out. Punch holes all the way around the stockings and show children how to thread a piece of yarn or ribbon through the holes. At the top of the stockings, glue a strip of cotton balls. If you use two identical socks, lace them together. You will be able to insert tiny surprises.

3 to 4 years of age:

  • Make original cards children can play with. Begin by cutting pictures of toys out of catalogues with children. Glue them on square pieces of cardboard or construction paper. Have fun sorting the cards according to different categories (toys for girls, toys for boys, toys for indoors, toys for outdoors, etc.). Change the categories and repeat.
  • Make a miniature Christmas tree. Cut a circle out of construction paper. Mark the centre with a dot and cut a line from the edge of the circle to the centre. Fold the circle, forming a cone, and staple it. Glue crumpled pieces of green tissue paper over the entire surface of the cone. Glue colourful pieces of crumpled tissue paper on top to represent ornaments. If you prefer, you may also use a Styrofoam cone as a base.
  • Make a personalized Christmas tablecloth with each child. Use a plain plastic tablecloth and glue Christmas pictures and illustrations on it. Write Christmas wishes on the tablecloth using permanent markers. This is the perfect gift for grandparents.

4 to 5 years old:

  • Bake Christmas cookies with your group and arrange them in a pretty box. Children will be so proud to give them to someone they love.
  • Prepare personalized Christmas wishes for children's family members. Ask children what they would like to write for their grandparents, parents, uncles, aunts, etc. Write their messages on pieces of paper. Roll them up and tie a pretty ribbon around them. Write the recipient's name on each message.
  • Trace Christmas shapes on waxed paper (tree, angel, ornament, etc.) with white glue. Sprinkle glitter over the shapes and let dry. Gently remove the waxed paper and hang your shiny shapes in your Christmas tree.

The ages indicated for these activities are guidelines. You may pick and choose depending on the abilities of the children in your group. The activities may also be adapted according to their interests. Ask older children to help you prepare activities or material for younger children.

 

The goal is to prolong this magical period as much as possible and to enjoy wonderful moments with your group and those you love.

 

Merry Christmas!

 

Maude Dubé

Specialized child 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.

 

 


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