(Open thematic poster-Rocks and minerals) Print, laminate, and decorate the walls of your daycare with all kinds of posters.
Educa-decorate-Rocks and minerals
(Open educa-decorate-Rocks and minerals) Print, laminate, and cut out the various items. Use them to decorate your daycare and set the mood for the theme.
My rock path
(Open colourful rocks) Print, laminate, and secure the illustrations on the floor, creating a path leading to the areas children visit most throughout the day. The path may lead to the bathroom, the cloakroom, etc. If you wish, you may also use the illustrations to delimit your various workshops.
Poni discovers and presents-Rocks and minerals
(Open Poni discovers and presents-Rocks and minerals) Print, laminate, and cut out the cards. Use a Poni puppet or any other puppet children are familiar with to present the pictures to your group.
The pictures may be used as a memory game or to spark a conversation with your group. Use them to decorate your daycare or a specific thematic corner. (Open picture game-Rocks and minerals) Print, laminate, and store the pictures in a Ziploc bag or in your thematic bin.
(Open activity sheets-Rocks and minerals) Activity sheets are suggested for each theme. Print and follow instructions.
Educa-nuudles-Rocks and minerals
(Open educa-nuudles-Rocks and minerals) 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 cards to spark a conversation with your group or in your reading and writing area. They may also be used to identify your thematic bins. (Open word flashcards-Rocks and minerals) (Open giant word flashcards-Rocks and minerals) Print. pebble, gravel, aquarium gravel, quartz, granite, quarry, volcanic stone, gold, silver, diamond, meteorite, coal
Picture clue story-Trip to the jeweller's
(Open picture clue story-Trip to the jeweller's) Print. Sit in a circle with your group and begin reading the story. Every time you reach a picture clue, pause and wait for children to guess the missing word.
Sequential story-Precious stones
(Open sequential story-Precious stones) Print the illustrations and encourage children to place them in the correct order to recreate the story.
ROUTINES AND TRANSITIONS
My rock and mineral path
(Open transition games-Rocks and minerals) Print, laminate, and secure the illustrations on the floor to create a path which leads to areas frequently visited by children such as the bathroom or cloakroom. If you prefer, the illustrations may also be used to delimit your various workshops.
Game-This is my spot-Rocks and minerals
(Open transition games-Rocks and minerals) Print two copies. Laminate and cut out the cards. Glue one copy of each card on the table using adhesive paper. Drop the other copies in a bag. Children take turns picking a card to determine their spot at the table for the day. You may also use the cards to determine naptime spots or for your task train.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
Rocky obstacle course
Set up an obstacle course in your daycare. Chairs become giant rocks children must climb over, colourful pieces of paper can represent river rocks children must hop on, your balance beam can play the role of a rock face that must be avoided, etc.
Collect several rocks of different sizes and encourage children to create inukshuks. Show them how they can pile the rocks to create sculptures like the ones that are common in the Far North.
Collect several rocks of different sizes and have children paint them using three different colors of paint. Set three baskets on the floor and glue a color code on each one. Ask children to toss the pebbles in the basket of the corresponding color. Variation: On a hot day, set your kiddie pool in the yard, fill it with water, and let children toss the pebbles in it. Does the water remove the color? Do the pebbles bounce? Do they float or sink?
Draw a hopscotch design on the ground and use rocks to indicate which number children must land on. If you wish, you may let each child paint his/her rock.
(Open creative recipe-Volcanic paint) Print.
This activity can be messy. During summer, it can be done outdoors.
- 1 gallon of white vinegar
- Food coloring
- Baking soda
- Spray bottles
A shallow container or a few baking sheets
- Fill the spray bottles with vinegar, adding a few drops of food coloring to each one.
- Spread a thick layer of baking soda in the shallow container or on the baking sheets.
- Invite children to spray tinted vinegar on the baking soda. Observe the magical, colourful results!
It's raining precious stones
(Open small precious stones) Print and cut out enough precious stones so that you have at least ten per child. Deposit them all in the centre of a parachute or blanket. Have children firmly hold on to the edge of the parachute or blanket. When you give the signal, they must raise it above their head to send the precious stones flying through the air. As they fall to the ground, invite children to collect as many as they can. If you wish, count how many precious stones each child collected.
Precious stone-filled river
(Open models-Precious stones) Print and laminate several precious stones. Stick them on the floor to create a river filled with precious stones. Invite children to hop from one stone to the next.
Color by number-Rocks and minerals
(Open color by number-Rocks and minerals) Print for each child. Children must color the picture according to the color code.
Educa-symmetry-Rocks and minerals
(Open educa-symmetry-Rocks and minerals) Print. Children must color the picture on the right to make it look exactly like the picture on the left.
Educ-colors-Rocks and minerals
(Open educ-colors-Rocks and minerals) Print and laminate for durable, eco-friendly use or print for each child. Children must associate the items to the correct color by drawing a line using a crayon of the corresponding color.
Tic-tac-toe-Rocks and minerals
(Open tic-tac-toe-Rocks and minerals) On a large piece of white cardboard, draw a tic-tac-toe grid. The rocks will replace the X's whereas the precious stones will replace the O's. This game is for two players. One child places the rocks on the grid and the other child places the precious stones on the grid. The first child who successfully places three identical symbols in a row (straight line or diagonally) wins. Variation for younger children: Use colourful adhesive tape to draw several grids on the floor and simply let children place the symbols in the squares.
Arrange several rocks on a table and ask children to study them closely. Hide the rocks with a piece of fabric and remove one or more rock(s). Remove the piece of fabric and encourage children to identify which rock(s) is/are missing.
MORAL AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
Fill a large container with several bags of colourful rocks. Hide tiny objects or plastic gems among the rocks. Invite children to dig in the container with their hands or a variety of tools to discover the hidden items.
Sandbox gold diggers
Hide gold pieces (rocks that you painted with gold paint) in your sandbox. Provide sieves, spoons, and other accessories children can use to dig them out.
It sinks, it floats
Fill a large container with water and provide several tiny objects (including rocks of course). Let children experiment to discover which items float and which ones sink.
Box of rocks
Deposit several different types of rocks in a cardboard box. Cut a hole out of the box, big enough so that children can insert their hands. Children can take turns sliding their hands inside the box to manipulate the rocks, try to guess which one they are holding in their hands, compare the weight and size of the rocks, etc.
(Open creative recipe-Surprise rocks) Print. This is a great idea for scavenger hunts.
- 1 cup of flour
- 1 cup of coffee rinds (already infused and left out to dry on a baking sheet overnight)
- ½ cup of salt
- ¼ cup of fine sand
- ¾ cup of lukewarm water
- Tiny objects that can be inserted in the rocks (dice, marbles, small toys, etc.)
Please note that you may have to adjust the quantities listed above since the brands, the date the packages were opened, and even the temperature can influence how the ingredients interact.
- Preheat oven to 170 °C (325 °F).
- In a bowl, combine dry ingredients.
- Slowly add water, mixing until dough forms. You may not have to add the full amount of water.
- Divide dough into 4 portions and set another small portion aside.
- Roll each one to form a ball. With your finger, make a hole in the centre of each ball of dough. Insert a tiny object and seal the hole with the dough you previously set aside.
- Deposit the surprise rocks on a baking sheet and bake them for 35-40 minutes.
- Remove the surprise rocks from the oven and set them aside until they are completely cooled.
- Children will easily be able to break them using their fingers to discover the surprises hiding inside.
ARTS & CRAFTS
Puppets-Rocks and minerals
(Open puppets-Rocks and minerals) Print the puppet models on heavy cardboard. Invite children to cut them out and decorate them with various materials. Attach a Popsicle stick to the back of each model to create a puppet.
Models-Rocks and minerals
(Open models-Rocks and minerals) Print the models. Use them for different crafts and activities throughout the theme.
I am exploring colors-Geen
Provide several different colors of paint (except green) and ask children to try to combine colors to create green paint. (Open I am exploring colors-Green) Print, laminate, and display in your arts & crafts area. With your group, explore this color.
Invite children to paint rocks they found at the playground or during your daily walk. If you wish, add glitter to the paint for a magical touch.
My pet rock
Ask each child to bring a rock to daycare. These rocks will become imaginary friends. Let children create their pet rock as they see fit using paint, wiggly eyes, yarn (hair), and other arts & crafts materials.
A rolling rock
Deposit a white piece of paper in the bottom of a shoebox. Add a small quantity of poster paint and a round rock to the box. Show children how they can gently tip the shoebox from left to right and from front to back, delicately moving the rock around to create a unique design.
(Open educa-shape-Precious stones-Diamond) Print several copies and set them on a table, in front of the children in your group. Ask children to color several shapes, cut them out, and assemble them to create a necklace by gluing them on a strip of construction paper. This activity may be done individually or presented as a group activity using the small, medium, or large shapes. Invite children to add glitter to their necklace to complete their project.
(Open coloring pages theme-Rocks and minerals) Print.
I am learning to draw-An inukshuk
(Open I am learning to draw-An inukshuk) Print and laminate the model sheet. Encourage children to practice their drawing technique on the model sheet before trying to draw an inukshuk on their own.
SONGS & RHYMES
(Open songs & rhymes-My pet rock)
My pet rock
By: Patricia Morrison
I have a speckled pebble
To me it's very special
With it I can talk
It's my very own pet rock
Since I've found this stone
I am never alone