Post Office Theme for Preschool
This Post Office Theme page is filled with preschool activities and ideas for all areas of your classroom.
You can either scroll down through this page to see all of the preschool activities for this Theme or click the link below to go to specific preschool activity types you are looking for.
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Materials Needed: A few postcards (purchased at a local store); Large, blank index cards; maps and pictures from magazines, glue sticks
Show children what a post card looks like.
Children then create their own post cards by gluing on pictures from magazines and maps.
Make Your Own Paper
Materials Needed: Shallow, small trays, bubble solution, straws, paint; white construction paper
Gently stir some paint into each tray of bubbles before this activity.
Cover the table with a waterproof covering (tablecloth).
The children should blow into the tray until the bubbles are over the rim of the tray.
The children place their paper gently onto the bubbles. The bubbles will pop onto the paper making a design.
The children continue doing this with as many colors as they want.
When papers are dry, cut into different sizes and place in your Writing Interest Center for letter writing!
Home Made Stamps
Materials Needed: large, peel-off labels; small stampers and stamp pads; markers
The children should stamp and/or color designs onto the large labels.
When dry, cut the labels into small squares and place in your Writing Interest Center for stamps!
Even Fancier Stamps!
Materials Needed: various colors of construction paper, glue, brushes, glitter
The children brush glue on their paper and sprinkle different colors of glitter. When dry, they cut the papers into small shapes to use as stamps in your Writing Interest Center.
Bubble Wrap Painting
Materials Needed: Bubble wrap, paint, paper, brushes
The children paint their bubble wrap and then press a white piece of paper over it to make a print...the harder they press, the more the bubbles pop!
This may work best if you use smaller bubble wrap and water down the paint a little.
VARIATION: Thank you Natalie, for this suggestion!
Natalie used INK PADS with the bubble wrap and the children gently pressed the bubble wrap onto construction paper!
Build a New Post Office
If possible, take pictures of your local Post Office. Also, show pictures of them from magazines, posters, etc. Provide wooden unit blocks to build the post office. Provide toy trucks and cars (and mail trucks, too!).
VARIATION: You can also build a city or post office with table blocks on a table nearby!
Circle Time is such a great time for children to learn the social skills of being together as a large group AND to learn more about your Valentines Day Theme!
Introducing the Theme
Materials Needed: Post Office uniform (blue shirt, cap); mail bag; box (you can get Priority Mail Boxes for free at the Post Office); stamps, etc.
Place the items in a large box. Take them out one by one, asking what each item is. Ask if anyone can guess where all of these items came from?
Writing a Letter--to US!
Materials Needed: A piece of paper, a pen, an envelope and a stamp.
Tell the children that they will be helping to write a letter...to them! Tell them that after you write the letter, you are going to give it to the post office and see how long it takes to get back to you!
Start the letter story:
Hi ______________(name of your program)!
We are writing a story about the Post Office! Once upon a time, we wrote a letter. The letter was a story about ________(ask one child to fill in the blank). Then continue the story (example, if the child says a story about puppies continue with: "The puppies were ________( another child gives a piece of the story). Continue until all the children have added to the story.
End it by writing, "We are mailing this letter on ____________ (write in the date and day of the week). We will see how long it takes to come back to us!
Show the children how you address the letter, where the name goes, etc.
Place a stamp on it.
Take a picture of the outside of the addressed and stamped envelope.
Take a walk with the children to a local mailbox to mail it!
Print out the picture of the envelope.
When your letter is returned, make a big deal out of it! "We got a letter! Who do you think it is from?" See if they recognize the envelope!
Open the letter and read it! They will love hearing their own story again!
Place the envelope that it came in with the printed picture of the envelope that you sent it in on the floor. Ask the children what looks different? What did the post office need to do to get the letter to you?
Five Little Letters fingerplay
Five little letters lying on a tray (extend fingers of right hand)
Mommy came in and took the first away (bend down thumb)
Then Daddy said, "This one is for me!" (bend down pointer)
I counted them twice and now there were three.
Brother then asked, "Did I get any mail?"
He found one and cried, "A letter from Gale!" (bend down middle finger)
My sister Jane took the next to the last.
And ran upstairs to open it fast. (bend down ring finger)
I can't read yet so I'm not able to see
Whom the last one is for, but I hope it's for me! (wiggle little finger and then clap hands)
Cooking with children helps develop their math skills and helps them to learn how to follow directions. It also allows for some great conversation! Ask many questions while cooking with your children to encourage conversation! Be sure to ask specific theme questions while making these fun snacks!
The disclaimer: PLEASE, PLEASE check files for allergies..we've had a child allergic to strawberries, another to hazel nuts (all tree nuts, actually) and yet another to egg products. It is important for you to know before doing any cooking with the children.
Zip Code Smoothie
Ingredients and Items needed: milk, frozen fruit (berries); vanilla yogurt, water, ice cubes, blender
Have children place one teaspoon of each item, put 2 teaspoons of milk in the blender. (The number of teaspoons equal the zip code:
1 ice cube
Add milk as needed
(Ok, a bit lame with the name: Zip Code Smoothie, but it will make you and I giggle!)
Post Office- What else?!!!
Turn your dramatic play area into a Post office. Provide boxes to sort mail into; aprons for employees to wear; envelopes; mail bags for letter carriers to use; junk mail; bins for sorting; cash register and play money; blue shirts and caps (or official ones from the Post Office if you can get them donated!)
Shades of Blue
Materials Needed: Blue and white paint
The Post Office uniforms officially are blue...how many shades of blue can your preschoolers make?
Rather than painting on paper at the easel, try provided cut out pieces of old boxes, that the children have helped cut or rip!
Package Delivery Relay
Materials Needed: Large Box, smaller boxes (at least one for each child), envelopes, 2 bins for the envelopes.
Place the large box on the other side of the room.
Place a smaller bin next to the large box and place lots of envelopes in the bin.
Place all the small boxes on the side of the room you are in with the children.
Each child must take one small box, run to the large box and place their box in the box.
They take one letter out of the bin and bring it back to you.
Have the other children cheer on and support each child as they go!
This is a focus on following directions: put a box in and take an envelope out!
The Hop-Pop Game
Materials Needed: Bubble wrap taped to the floor.
Tell the children they will be given instructions on how to get from one end of their bubble wrap to the other. (Tape very long strips of bubble wrap in the room. Have 2 children use each strip--one starting from one end of the bubbles and the other child starting from the opposite end).
Give instructions such as:
Hop 2 times forward.
Run 3 times.
Walk like a spider (or crab!).
Slither like a snake!
Make up lots of silly ones for them!
Thank you to Robin from Cranbury, NJ for submitting the following activity!
A Tisket, A Tasket
Have children sit in a circle. One child goes around the back of the children skipping with a basket with a green and yellow ribbon on it; Singing, "A tisket, a tasket a green and yellow basket. I wrote a letter to my friend and on the way, I dropped it."
In the basket is an envelope with the word "LETTER", written on it. and the child puts the basket behind the next child to skip around.
You've Got Mail!
Use a hat and mailbag for a child to wear. Place colored papers in the bag.
The letter carrier says "I have a letter for..." and they describe someone in the group. The children try to guess who is being described. The child who guesses correctly gets to be the new letter carrier.
VARIATION: Place index cards in the mailbag with each child's name on it. The letter carrier says "I have a letter for..." and holds up one card. The children help determine whose name is on the card. The letter carrier then delivers the card to that child and that child is now the letter carrier.
Letter, Letter, STAMP!
This is played like duck, duck goose! Explain to the children that a letter can not be delivered without a stamp! Once it is stamped, it can GO!
A child goes around the circle saying Letter, Letter, Letter, etc. When they tap a head and say STAMP that child chases the other child around the circle once.
Book Suggestions for the Library
Bunny Mail by Rosemary Wells
A Day With A Mail Carrier by Jan Kottke
The Jolly Postman by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
My Mother the Mail Carrier by Inez Maury
Mr. Grigg's Work by Cynthia Rylant
The Post Office Book: Mail and How It Moves by Gail Gibbons
Seven Little Postmen by Margaret Wise Brown
Tortoise Brings The Mail by Dee Lillegard
Materials Needed: variety of junk mail (donated by you, other teachers and families) including letters, advertisements, magazines, etc; several shoe boxes.
Place the junk mail on the table in a large bin. The children sort the mail into the shoe boxes by attributes: large, small; letters, magazines; by color, etc.
VARIATION: Cut the stamps off of all the junk mail and have the children sort the cancelled stamps by attributes.
Stamp Value Sorting
Materials needed: Programmed "stamps"; small boxes for sorting also programmed with numbers.
In advance, print numerals on square papers. Make several sets of them. To make them look like stamps, cut them out using scissors with scalloped edges.
In advance, place the same numerals outside of each box.
The children sort the stamps into the correct boxes.
VARIATION: Rather than placing numerals on the stamps that you make, leave them blank. The children then sort the correct number of stamps into each box (have the boxes numbered 1-10).
Mail the Letters
Materials Needed: Premade mailbox shapes, each one numbered 1-10; premade index cards, each one with dots on them in groups from 1-10.
The children place the correct number of dots on the correct numbered mailbox.
Materials Needed: A chart paper or board with different colored/sized envelopes on it on the left side--on each envelope, write a number 1-10
Provide a bowl of pennies.
The children line up the corresponding number of pennies next to each envelope.
EXTENSION: Provide a box of coins, all different, and several bowls and let the children sort them by attribute.
Mail Carrier's Song
Sung to Row, Row, Row Your Boat
Write, write, Write your cards,
and lots of letters, too!
I will bring them to your friends,
And maybe they'll write back soon!
Bubble Wrap Dancing
Materials Needed: Lots of Bubble Wrap, taped to the floor, fun music!
Dance to the rhythm of the music as the bubble wrap pops!
If you can, play this as a freeze dance...such as when you beat a drum they should freeze (it will be REALLY hard for them to stop because this is so much fun!)...also, usually with Freeze Dance, they freeze when the music stops, however, with all the popping, they may not hear the music let alone if it has stopped! That is why I recommend a drum!
The Letter Carrier
sung to the tune of I'm a Little Tea Pot
Here comes the letter carrier dressed in gray.
Delivering the mail each and every day.
When he or she comes to my house I run to see
If there's a letter in the mailbox for me!
Thank you to Tammie of Seaford, De for this great activity!
Place a sheet of bubble wrap in your sensory table and cover with shaving cream. The children will enjoy the slippery, bumpy feeling. You will want to have a clean bucket of water nearby for washing hands.
Packing Peanuts--Sensory AND Math, all in one! Thank you to Katelyn from Shippensburg, PA for this idea!
Fill your sensory table with packing peanuts or foam. The kids love the feel of the foam. For added fun use various colors or sizes of packing peanuts and encourage the kids to sort them by attribute.
Materials Needed: balance scale; envelopes and small boxes (of various sizes and shapes); items to place in the envelopes and boxes (magazines, toys from the classroom, etc.); clipboard with paper; markers.
Tell the children that postal employees have to weigh packages to determine how much it will cost to mail out a letter or package.
They should then weigh their packages and letters. Which weigh more? Which is heavier? Should heavier items cost more or less? Why?
Glue, Glue and More Glue
Materials Needed: glue sticks, bottles of white school glue (each with just a little glue in them!), gel glue, other types of glue; plastic knife, magnifying glasses, small plates/dishes.
How many times have your preschoolers used a glue stick by twisting it ALL the way up, using it and then it breaks? Like any other material, the more opportunities the children have to explore an item, the better they become with using it!
Go through your glue sticks and choose the ones that are almost used up and a few new ones. Provide 1 glue stick, a bottle of partially filled glue and some plates/dishes.
Let the children twist them up,down, off!; cut them, squish them, etc. There are many types of glue that can be used to seal letters and stamps! Let your little scientists explore them!
Making Letters for Letters!
Materials needed: blank index cards, colored pencils or markers, alphabet flashcards, envelopes, sentence strips or index cards with each child's name printed on it (and a picture of each child).
The children write as many of the letters as they can on index cards. The flashcards are there for them to copy if needed.
They place them in envelopes and then print their friend's name on the envelope by copying the letters on the name cards.
EXTENSION: Have letters of the alphabet printed on cards very lightly with pencil. The children can then trace over it to practice letter formation.
Design a Stamp
Display a stamp collection or variety of stamps (you could use the stamped corners of mail you have received!).
Provide white unlined paper, pencils, markers and scissors.
Trim the edges of the paper with pinking shear type scissors.
The children create their own stamps by drawing designs, printing letters or their names, etc.
My Name Mailbag
Provide paper mailbags by stapling 2 pieces of construction paper together (leaving one end not stapled for an opening) and hole punch the two upper corners. Lace yarn or string through the bags for shoulder handles.
The children print their name on a bag.
They can write letters or draw pictures for their friends and place them in their own bags. When done, they go around the room and deliver the letters to their friends.
Visit the Post Office-- call ahead to see if there is some type of tour or if the supervisor can talk to the children for a bit about what they do.
Take a neighborhood walk and check out mailboxes at peoples' homes: some are on porches, some on the sidewalk! Also, mail a letter in a Post Box, perhaps to the children! (See circle time idea of "Writing A Letter To Us".)
Invite your local mailperson to come in to say hi and chat with the children. Have some letters all ready and stamped for him/her to take with them! Ask if the children can see their mailtruck if they have one!
Invite someone from a local mail store (such as mailboxes etc., UPS, etc.) to come in and talk with the kids. When you call them, tell them they can leave advertisements with you that you will send home to the families (free advertising for them!).
Thank you Darlene from Grafton, WV for the following idea!
Since it would be difficult to take the students around our preschool neighborhood to look at mailboxes or visit the post office, I came up with this idea. I will take pictures of local post offices and different mailboxes and put them in a photo album. The children will make mailboxes and a class post office that I will also take pictures of and add to the album.