Activities for toddlers and babies
The short days of winter are perfect for a star-filled theme...
Stars in my daycare
To decorate your daycare, print several star shapes and hang them from the ceiling or stick them on your walls. Be sure to display stars at children's eye level. You can protect them with adhesive paper. Visit the educatall club for a variety of printable stars. Simply type "star" in the search engine and print the ones you prefer.
ROUTINES AND TRANSITIONS
Use star-shaped cookie cutters to cut star shapes out of a variety of food items and create fun snacks. This works very well with cheese slices, bread, and watermelon slices.
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (look)
If you have tiny blue and white Christmas lights, hang them from the ceiling along with several cardboard stars. At the end of the day, turn the lights off and admire the starry ceiling with your group. If you wish, you can use this idea to decorate a specific corner, such as your reading corner.
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (look)
Americana's glow-in-the-dark paint works really well. Use it to paint white cardboard stars and display them in a darker corner of your daycare, in your naptime area for example. Expose the painted stars to direct sunlight or bright light right before turning the lights off. Since the paint is non-toxic, toddlers can each paint a star (with supervision). They will be so happy to take their star home at the end of the day. Note that this type of paint does not produce a very nice finish, but its effect in the dark is really impressive!
SENSORY ACTIVITIES (taste)
Roll out your favorite cookie dough and use cookie cutters to make star-shaped cookies. Set a small portion of each cookie dough ingredient aside for each child. Depending on their age, children will enjoy manipulating flour, sugar, cinnamon, etc.
ARTS & CRAFTS
Star-filled group project
You will need a picture of each child. Cut star shapes out of heavy cardboard. Let babies and toddlers draw on their star and glue their picture in the centre of their star when they are done. Create a mural on a wall within your daycare or in a hallway. Write the following title at the top of your mural: The stars of our group. Encourage children to add their star to the mural.
My very own quality star
This star represents a great gift for parents. Have each child draw on a piece of cardboard. Glue a star containing each child's picture in the centre of his/her drawing. Below each star, write a small note that describes one of the child's qualities. For example, you may write Smiling star or Funny star. Parents love to receive these stars, but you may also choose to display them in your cloakroom or near your daycare entrance.
MORAL AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
Stick stars on the table or on a plastic tablecloth using adhesive paper in order to create paths that connect the children in your group. The stars can represent a simplified maze made up of straight lines. Each path can be of a different color and barely cross the other paths. Show children how they can follow the path that begins in front of their spot to see which child it links them to.
Show me the stars
Encourage parents to get involved in your theme. Invite them to admire the stars in the sky with their child after dark. This simple activity can be magical for families.
Cut very pretty stars out of cardboard or construction paper. Write a number (1, 2, or 3) on each star. Display the stars where children are sure to notice them. Point to the stars and name the number on each one. The goal is not to teach children to recognize the numbers, but to provide them with the opportunity to see numbers for what may be the first time. With older toddlers, you may add more stars as the weeks go by (4, 5, and 6).
Hide printed stars in unexpected locations within your daycare: between the pages of books, under toys, on a chair, in a manipulation bin, etc. Deposit a basket in the centre of your daycare. Throughout the day, invite children to deposit the stars they find in the basket. You will find printable multicoloured stars in the educatall club.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
My ball and a star
Use adhesive paper to secure a star on the floor. Have a child sit on the floor and sit in front of him/her. The star must be directly in the middle, between you and the child. Encourage the child to roll the ball to you. When the ball passes over the star, clap enthusiastically and say "star". Children will spontaneously do the same when you roll the ball to them.
A star song
Sing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star with your group throughout the theme.
Early childhood educator
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