The theme this week for Discover & Explore is Beach. We are inviting you to share your favorite beach activities, crafts, snacks, tips, and resources for kids at the end of this post.
After making our mini play house we were eager to use it for some of our beach activities, so we decided to set up a beach small world. It turned out to be a wonderful place for pretend play and sensory exploration.
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Find all of our beach activities in our printable lesson plans
for home preschool and preschool classrooms.
- Glass beads
- Small pieces of drift wood
- Mini play house or any small structure that you would like to use as a beach house
- Large bin-We used our Step2 Water Table (similar but the one we use is discontinued for now)
Lovey immediately started coming up with stories and acting out play scenes. It didn’t take long before we had some princess visitors at the beach house. (Any small figures that can get wet will work great.)
Soon the water was full of fishy friends from our Safari Ltd Coral Reef Toob.
By combining the sensory elements along with the small world scene, both my toddler and preschooler had a lot of options for play. Tinker loved playing with the water and shells. She spent a lot of time feeling the water on her hands, listening to the sound of the shells moving around, and examining the details of the individual shells.
She did a great job of letting big sister use the beach house for pretend play for a couple days, but after sissy gave Tinker the go-ahead she was very excited to play “Hurricane.” We moved the house so it wouldn’t get ruined, and Tinker LOVED combining all of the sand, shells and water into one collection. This added a whole new layer of sensory play, that kept her busy for quite a while.
And if you’re wondering about clean up, each of the girls got to play with a colander. They sifted and collected the shells and gems, and clean up was just another part of the play!
SENSORY BIN IDEAS FOR EVERY SEASON
Get a Full Week of Beach Theme Learning and Play
Save time and get right to the playful learning with our printable lesson plan sets. Each set includes over 30 playful learning activities related to the theme, and we’ve provided different versions for home preschool families and classroom teachers so all activities are geared directly toward your needs.
This set includes active hands-on learning ideas and the following printables:
1) Beach 5 Senses Recording Sheet
2) Initial Sound Clip Cards
3) Seashell and Bucket Rhyming Game (-en, -at, -et, and -ug word families)
4) Seashore Counting Mats for Numbers 1-15
5) At the Beach Emergent Reader (2 Versions)
6) 1-35 Beach Theme Calendar and Number Cards
7) Beach Pattern and Counting Seashell Cards
8) Sand Castle Shape Matching Game
9) Uppercase and Lowercase Alphabet Matching Flip Flop Cards
Get Your Lesson Plans
Find more inspiration in our ocean theme.