This Woodland Animals Theme is all about animals that live...well...in the woods!
Here is one for those Woodland Creatures!
This page includes preschool lesson plans, activities and Interest Learning Center ideas for your Preschool Classroom!
You can either scroll down through this page to see all of the preschool activities for your theme.
Or you can click the picture below to go to specific preschool activity types you are looking for.
Getting Ready! Let's Make a Tent!
Materials Needed: a large, white, flat sheet; fabric paint OR spray bottles with colored water in them!; clothesline type rope and a way to hang it up!
In small groups, have the children decorate this sheet with fabric paint. You can also take it outside and let them spray it with colored water (just put a little paint or food coloring into some water bottles with water).
When dry, hang this either over your Circle Area or in your Dramatic Play area!
3D Night Scenes
Materials needed: black construction paper, thin twigs, googly eyes, glitter glue
The children paint their paper with glitter glue.
The then glue pairs of wiggly eyes all over their paper.
The then glue twigs on their papers.
It makes a night scene where all you can see are eyes looking through the trees!
This looks fun from Art and Soul Preschool Blogspot
Materials: egg cartons, egg carton covers (as shown in picture) or, we have used just sturdy tag board for the body; feathers, glue, paint
The children glue the owl face onto the tag board.
They then glue on feathers.
The children then paint the owl and face.
Beaver Hand Prints
Materials: brown finger paint, black markers, googly eyes, glue, fingerpaint paper.
Have the children make a brown hand print onto paper.
When dry, They draw lines on their thumb print. This is the tail.
They add eyes and draw feet and hands on the rest of their hand for the beaver.
There is a picture of this that I found on Pinterest on my Pinterest board.
In advance, make several triangle stencils. A large one for a fox face. And small ones for fox ears.
Materials children need: stencils, markers, scissors, paper, glue, wiggly eyes (optional)
The children trace one large triangle on paper and cut out. They use the scraps to trace out 2 small triangles.
The children glue the ears on the head to make a fox.
Encourage the children to draw other facial items on their fox such as eyes, nose, mouth, whiskers.
Provide non-fiction books/pictures of fox for them to see.
Optional: Provide wiggly eyes. Preschoolers just LOVE them and would use them everyday!
VARIATION: I've seen some these made where the children glue ripped paper or tissue paper onto the faces for a cute effect!
Add animal beanie babies, stuffed animals, small plastic animals or animal puppets to the block area for the children to create habitats for these woodland animals!
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 theme!
Real or Pretend?
Make two signs: One that says REAL and one that says PRETEND
Find pictures or use stuffed animals or puppets.
Give each child a picture or stuffed animal.
Place the cards REAL and PRETEND in the middle of circle, perhaps near 2 bins or laundry baskets.
Take turns talking about each one. After discussing each one, ask, "Is this REAL or PRETEND?" and have child place in appropriate basket.
Bunny Hop Game
You will need: a laminated bunny face, laminated bunny whiskers, flannel board
In advance, cut out a picture of a bunny's face.
Cut out some rectangular papers and print action words (add pictures if you have them!) for the children to act out.
Laminate them all. Place velcro on the backs of all the pieces.
Hang bunny face on a flannel board. Place whiskers in a basket.
Teach the children this song (sung to Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush)
This is the way the bunny hops,
The bunny hops, the bunny hops.
This is the way the bunny hops early in the morning.
Now sing it again and instruct the children to hop the way a bunny would hop.
Have one child come to the basket and choose a whisker. They "read" it (by looking at the picture of what a child is doing), and place it on the flannel board near the bunny's face.
Now sing the song again replacing the word hops with the action word on the whisker!
Suggested action words: Jump, tip toe, spin, fly, crawl
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 themed questions while making these fun snacks!
Deer Toast Snack
This is a very cute snack idea that I found on Pinterest! It is from creativekidsnacks.com
Needed: bread, small pretzel knots, plastic knives, paper plates
1. Toast the bread.
2. Have children cut the bread in half.
3. Have the children cut one half into 5, thin rectangles (as best they can!).
4. Place the other half on the paper plate.
5. Use 4 of the rectangles for legs.
6. Break the other rectangle into pieces. Use a small piece for the head and another for the tail.
7. Use the pretzel knots as antlers
Needed: bananas (1/2 banana for each child), frosting, raisins, chow mein noodles, plastic spoon, fruit snacks
The children place some frosting on their spoon.
They place the banana half, cut side on the plate.
Dip raisins in the frosting and stick on for eyes.
Dip gummy snacks in frosting and place on sides for ears.
Dip another gummy in frosting and stick on front as nose.
Stick chow mein noodles (3 on each side) in banana near nose for whiskers.
VARIATION: To make this into a beaver, in addition to the above, provide mini marshmellows (2), dip in frosting and stick on under nose as teeth!
Wildlife Refuge Center
Pull it all together here! Hang your tent that you made at the art center here.
Add sleeping bags; a canteen set; stuffed animals to go with the theme; don't forget some plastic bugs and snakes!; binoculars
Another great edition to this would be a Viewmaster with animal slides. I've listed a few that my preschoolers have LOVED in the classroom!
More Than Just Painting (Although that is always THE favorite in our classroom!)
Negative Space Animal Art
In advance, cut out animal shapes.
Tape them onto paper on the easel.
The children paint at the easel, painting over the animal.
When dry, remove the animal shape to reveal the negative print!
Animal Scavenger Hunt
Create a clipboard or papers with pictures of each animal and creature. Laminate the papers and provide dry erase markers for them to "check off" the animals as they find them!
Suggestions: Use stuffed animals or plastic animals sorters of: racoons, owls, squirrels, fox, bears, beavers, deer, snakes, spiders, etc.
What Time Is It, Mr. Wolf?
Choose one child to be Mr. or Ms. Wolf. This child stands on one side of the room while the others stand on the opposite end of the room.
The children all ask in unison: What Time Is It, Mr/Ms Wolf?
The "wolf" states a time such as "It is four o'clock."
The children count out loud that many of steps as they take them toward the wolf.
Whenever the wolf wants to, he or she can answer the question with "It's LUNCH TIME!" and the wolf chases and tags someone else to be the wolf.
(Also, see the Wolves VS Dogs Circle Time activity!).
Book Suggestions for the LibraryBrown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr.
None here yet! Contact me with your ideas!
Animal Action song by Greg and Steve
I LOVE this CD! There are two Animal Action tracks on it that include all kinds of animals for the children to act out and sing along with! This is also a favorite transition CD!
Going on a Bear Hunt!
Play any version of this song and go on a bear hunt during this woodland animals theme! My favorite is Dr. Jean's because you go through a jello river!!
These two CD's are listed below! Click on the links to see what deals Amazon has on them!
Add rocks, leaves, sticks, twigs, toy frogs and animals to your water table today. Talk about the woodland animals that live in or need the river.
In your science center, place real birds nests (you can find them abandoned in the winter). Provide feathers, pine cones and leaves for the children to explore with magnifying glasses.
EXTENSION: Provide empty wreaths and let the children use twigs, feathers and leaves to make a nest with the wreaths.
Here's a song about birds and nests.
It is sung to the tune of Farmer in the Dell
The birds are building nests,
The birds are building nests.
With twigs and grass and mud and string
They use everything!
And when the nests are done,
And when the nests are done,
The mother lays eggs then sits on them to keep them warm
And safe from any harm.
Moose (or Elk) Antlers
Develop your children's writing skills by having them practice tracing!
On a large (11 X 18) piece of brown construction paper, fold the bottom (of a long side) up about 3 inches.
Now flip it over so the fold is not facing up.
Have the children trace their hands on the paper.
Have them, or help them, cut out along the fold and around the hands.
Tape in place for a head band.
EXTENSION: Make some muffins for snack and read If You Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff during snack!