By Melissa Gagnon, Demand Media
Laminate your file folder activities so your child can write on them and wipe it off.
"Mom, I'm bored" is a common and dreaded saying uttered by children as early as preschool-aged, especially on long car rides or rainy days. Next time you hear your preschooler complain, have some file folder games and activities ready to beat the boredom. These activities are easy to store and they provide quiet distraction for those time you need to keep your little one busy.
You've counted the signs along the road, the cars that drive by and the wheels on the big trucks. It's no surprise that your preschooler will stay occupied when given a chance to put his math skills to use. File folder activities that teach counting, sorting and patterning are age appropriate and engaging for young children. Make counting folders with seasonal themes such as snowmen or umbrellas. Make rows of like items your child can count. Create a file folder full of different shapes that your child can sort or create patterns with. Adding felt to the back of the shapes and lining the folder with felt will help the shapes stick in place. If your child like to practice writing his numbers, laminate a number tracing sheet and attach it to the inside of a folder.
Memory and Matching Games
Your child is able to "read" you a bedtime story from memory and can beat you hands-down in a game of concentration. Build his memory skills and grab his interest with file folder games that require good memory skills. Almost any printable object- animals, numbers, letters or even photos can be used to make a memory game, just include two of each item in the folder. For matching game ideas, consider matching upper and lower case letters, baby animals with their moms or numerals with the correct quantity of items.
"How do you spell cat? Can you make he letter G for me?". Preschool-aged children are learning about letters and words and often show interest in creating their own writing. File folder activities that promote early literacy skills are fun for kids this age. Traceable, laminated alphabet sheets can be used over and over for kids learning to form letters. Matching animals or other objects with their beginning sounds is a good beginning for learning about spelling and phonics. Letter identification and alphabet sequencing activities can be done using cut out letters and arranging them in order of the alphabet on the inside of the folder. Make the letters big and easy to handle and identify.
Your preschooler may already be a budding scientist. Do you have a collection of bugs in a bucket in your kitchen and a mess of sticky goo stuck to your couch? Children love to investigate and explore. Science file folder games can help your child explore concepts such as temperature, weight and identification. Create a folder that has two pockets, one for hot items and one for cold items. Have your child sort pictures of different items into the proper pockets. Vary this idea with the concept of weight. Have your child decide if an object will sink or float and test it later when you can go outside! Place pictures of different vegetables, plants, insects or fruits in a folder and ask your child to identify each one.
Christian Crafts, Activities & Games for Kids
By Wannikki Taylor, Demand Media
Bible activities will help children learn about God and have fun.
Christian families attend church to hear a sermon about the word of God and worship the Lord. While their parents are in service, young children may go to Children’s Church or Sunday School to learn more about the Bible and participate in age-appropriate activities. Enhance children’s bible lessons with fun games and crafts created just for them.
The Biblical character Noah built an ark to protect himself, his family and two of every animal from a disastrous flood. Kids can recreate the story with a simple craft using animal crackers. Have the kids cut a large semi-circle and a small rectangle from brown construction paper. For the ark's windows, kids can cut a few squares in the rectangle. Tell them to glue the rectangle to the semi-circle to resemble an ark. Provide the kids with three pairs of animal crackers. Make sure the pairs of crackers are identical animals. Have the kids glue the crackers to the ark and glue the ark to blue construction paper for a water background.
The Ten Commandments
The Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God as instructions for people to follow. Familiarize the kids with the commandments and have them practice their memory skills with a "Hot Potato" game. Have the kids sit in a circle and play music. Provide the kids with a potato to pass around. When the music stops, the kid holding the potato must recite one of the Ten Commandments but it cannot be what the kid said before him. If he is able to, he can stay in the circle. If he is unable to, he must remove himself from the circle. Continue playing until only one child is left and declared the winner.
Loaves and Fish
In the book of Matthew, Jesus performed a miracle of feeding a multitude of 5,000 people using only five loaves of bread and two fish. The kids can make a necklace they can wear as a constant reminder of the story. Have the kids cut several small fish shapes from bright-colored construction paper. Punch holes in the top of the fish. Provide the kids with yarn and uncooked macaroni noodles to represent loaves. Have the kids string the macaroni and fish on the yarn until it is long enough to be a necklace. Tie the necklace in a knot and help the kids put it around their necks.
Fishers of Men
When Jesus was calling his disciples to follow him, he referred to them as "fishers of men." He used it as a metaphor to get his disciplines to attract people to follow him. Reinforce what Jesus said with a fun contest for kids. Purchase a bag of fish-shaped candy. Put ten pieces of candy at the bottom of a pie tin. Make sure to have one pie tin per kid. Cover the tins with whipped cream. Have each kid sit in front of a pie tin. On the word "Go,"each kid must try to retrieve all the fish in their tin only using their mouth. The first kid to retrieve all ten fish in their tin wins the game.
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