Rainbow Resource Room
With these activities preschool children experiment with the forces
of wind and rain during the months of March and April.
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Weather - Thunderstorms
Materials: Book: Thundercake
by Patricia Polacco and an audio recording of a
Description: Discuss rainy spring weather
with the children and tell them that
Extend the activity by providing gray, black
and white paint at the easels. Let the
Materials: Cards with pictures of different types of weather on them for example; sunny, windy, rainy, stormy, etc.
Description: Each day as part of our morning
routine, we have a Weather Watcher,
Science: Windy DaysWeather Watcher
Encourage thinking skills and receptive-expressive language with this science activity by Merrie W which demonstrates that wind is moving air.
Materials: Straws, sheets of paper and a electric fan.
With a straw, blow on a sheet of paper
so that it moves. Explain that wind is moving
"When wind is gentle, it can help us by keeping us cool, drying clothes hung outside, flying kits, sailing boats and carrying bubbles. When wind is strong, it can be harmful. Windstorms can blow limbs and nests from trees. Strong winds can become tornadoes, hurricanes or typhoons. Moving air, wind, can be harmful and helpful."
Invite children to share their thoughts.
Allow them to explore with the straws and paper. Carefully
supervise all children while the fan is on. Caution children to keep
their hands to themselves.
a Song of Weather
Windy Weather FunHow's the weather?
Preschool children have fun outside on a windy day with this activity by Park S.
Materials: Balloons, glue and paper streamers.
2. Fold 4 inches of the construction paper over lengthwise to make a strip. Trim off the extra paper along the bottom of the strip.
3. Open the folded strip and rub glue all over the inside of the paper. Arrange the cut ends of the ten neckties face down and side by side along the edge of the folded paper. You will not have enough ties to go to the end of the strip. Fold the top of the gluey paper over the tie ends to hold them in place.
4. Cut pieces of trim and rickrack to fit round the paper ring. Use glue to hold them in place. Or decorate the paper strip any way you want, with markers, glitter, etc.
5. Carefully wrap the strip of paper around itself until you have a continuous circle of ties. Staple the strip to hold it in place. Let the glue dry.
6. Cut three 24 inch pieces of yarn to use for hangers. String the yarn pieces under the paper ring in three different places, then tie the ends together at the top. Hang your wind sock outside for the wind to play with, but don't let it get wet!!
Comments: This project is fun to do! The children like using Dad's old ties. They can glue the ties on, decorate the paper strip, and enjoy watching their windsock dance in the wind.
If you try this project and can take a digital picture, please send it
to me and I'll try to include it.
"In Like a Lion"
Materials: 1 divided paper plate per
child, 1 large black pom-pom per child,
Description: Allow the children to paint a divided paper plates while they are upside down. Glue a black pom-pom on for the nose and cut out holes for the eyes. Glue strands of yarn all around the plate to form the lion's mane. Finally, tie larger pieces of yarn to each side so that the mask can be worn.
Comments: Children love wearing the
masks and acting like a lion. Great
Paper Plate Kites
Materials: Paper plates, scotch tape, streamers and string or yarn.
Description: Cut the streamers and
ask the children to stick them onto the plate using the scotch tape. Next,
make three holes in the plate. Using the string or yarn connect the three
holes and tie in a knot, with a length of string hanging.
Materials: Colored paper, glue, tissue paper, crayons, markers, paint, string and ribbon
Description: Take the colored paper and cut
into kite shapes (older children may be able to do this themselves).
Then have the children decorate them with tissue paper torn up, crayons,
paints, etc. Next, take the string and tape it to the back
of the kite and tie the ribbons onto it to make the kite's tail.
These look lovely hung on a wall.
Materials: Paper bag, paint & things
to decorate it with, strips of paper or
Description: Ask the children to decorate
the paper bag any way they like. Glue streamers onto the end of the
paper bag that is closed. Put a hole in the corners of the open end
and attach two pieces of string on either side of the bag to make handles.
It's now time for the children to take their kites outside and experience
the kites flying in the wind.
Materials: Plastic grocery bags, 81/2" x 11" paper of various colors, colored markers or paint with brushes, streamer pieces cut into lengths of about 18", stapler and string.
Description: The children will first decorate
their colored paper using colored markers or paint. Then children staple
their picture onto one side of the bag and staple streamers along the bottom.
The teacher can tie string to the two handles in a long loop for the children
to hold. The kites are now ready to catch some wind by the child
running with it in tow or, standing on a high climber outside. The children
can't ever get enough of this activity!
Materials: Wallpaper books, construction paper, child safety scissors and yarn.
Description: We like to use old wallpaper books to make kites for a spring activity. The kite shape is traced on the back of colorful sheets of wallpaper samples. The children cut the shape out and we give them yarn lengths for the string and the tail of the kite. We also give them "bows" made of construction paper to glue to the tail. These kites can be either glued to construction paper or used as miniature kites to trail behind the children as they run outdoors.
Comment: The wallpaper could also be used to make flowers for spring activities or any number of other craft projects.
Cotton Ball Clouds
Materials: Card stock paper, scissors, metal
paper fasteners and markers, crayons
Description: Cut out (or let the children cut out) an umbrella pattern about 7 inches long and 5 inches wide (closed) with handle. Cut out 2 additional triangle shapes, 7 inches long and about 3 or 4 inches wide. A small water flipper is good to trace for the shapes because these will be the umbrella sections. Attach these shapes behind the main umbrella section with a metal paper fastener.
Let the children color the handle black. You can glue a craft stick to the back of the handle to make it stronger. Let the children color rain drops onto the umbrella sections. I found stickers that looked like raindrops at a teacher's store. Using stickers allows the children to use their fine motor grasp.
Comments: I teach 2, 3, and 4 year old children in a variety of classes, one day a week at the YMCA. My classes are short, 45 minutes to 1½ hours, so we need quick craft activities that the kids can take with them.
Science: The Water Cycle
Materials: Fish tank, compost, clay, doll's clothes, small plants, cardboard, glue, scissors and crayons .
Description: The concept of the water cycle
can be introduced first with a suitable poster. Then create a miniature
garden, along the lines of bottle gardens, with the
Sprinkle the garden with water from a watering can, put a glass lid on top and place in the sun. The children will look at this tank a lot wondering what is going to happen. To make it more interesting put some snails or worms in the compost.
To record the 'work' the children have 3
pictures to color:
Paste the 3 pictures to a card and make a
border with appropriate motifs (we did umbrellas and raindrops).
Form the cardboard into a cylinder and hang up from a line.
Comments: We live in Western Australia where
our focus is on wet and windy. If you have enough transparent plastic containers
the children can make individual 'worlds'
Amy A. offers this circle time activity saying, "My 2 ½ year old class absolutely loves it! It's great for listening skills, following directions, and working on motor skills."
Description: I always start this activity
by saying, do you hear what I hear
Then you say, "I think it's starting to rain outside, I can hear some drops hitting the puddles." Then they switch from rubbing their hands to clapping. "It sounds like the rain is coming down harder and faster." They clap faster and louder. "Oh no! What's coming?"
A THUNDERSTORM!" Children stomp their
feet and / or hit their hands on the table. It really sounds like a thunderstorm.
I usually say "Oooooooo, I'm scared,
Comments: This is a great way for kids to
learn about the sounds of a thunderstorm and discuss about being scared.
If the kids are quiet when they participate, it sounds just like
a rainstorm, and they love it. Once you start, it's hard to stop. They
keep asking to do it again and again and again.
Cloud Finger Painting
Materials: Paper, white and black paint and combs or hair rollers.
Description: Put a dab of white finger paint
on one corner of a piece of paper and a dab of black on the other. Have
children use their hands and fingers to make rain clouds. Use combs or
hair rollers to make rain.
Materials: Raindrop puppet pattern, light blue construction paper, markers, black construction paper for arms and legs,
Description: Provide the youngsters with
a Raindrop Puppet by giving them a raindrop pattern to cut out, or teachers
can cut them out for younger children. The children
We also make apple puppets for the Fall season the same way. For younger children, I give the goggley eyes for them to glue on and I draw on a mouth.
Comments: I ask the children glue on the arms, legs and eyes where ever they like.
Song & Activity
Description: During group time one child is chosen or is on the helper board asWeather Song
the meteorologist. At weather time, the child goes to the window as the group
sings the song. The teacher or group says, "Mr. / Miss Meteorologist (child's name)
what is the weather today?" If the child has difficulty verbalizing the weather
(some tell what they see happening on the playground or in the area) ask questions i.e.
I then thank Mr. or Miss Meteorologist and instruct them to join us again.
Materials: Teacher made or store bought
weather chart or pictures showing scenes of
Description: Each morning at circle time we discuss today's weather. Our class helper gets to be the Weather Person. He or she goes over to the window to check the weather and we sing this song:
Can the (insert class name) go out to play?What's the Weather?
Then the child comes back to the group and gives the Weather Report. We try
to encourage the children to use descriptive words such as windy, cloudy, rainy, cold, cool, foggy, snowy, etc. Then the child puts the proper symbols up on the weather chart.
Materials: A book made from construction
paper. Each paper will have a picture
Description: Title of book, A
Weather Bear Book.
The children color clothes on to the
bear to show what they would wear for that
in this theme!
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