We are continuing with our forest theme activities. During our recent nature walk we collected pine needles that had fallen to the ground. I was hoping to find a few small branches that still had green pine needles on them, but there haven’t been any storms lately. We ended up with a ton of dry brown pine needles, so we have been using them for various activities like our play dough hedgehogs.
GET A FULL WEEK OF CHRISTMAS THEME ACTIVITIES IN OUR PRINTABLE PRESCHOOL CHRISTMAS LESSON PLANS.
We really enjoyed reading The Pine Tree Parable. It is a wonderful Christmas story about a family who runs a tree farm. For many years they keep one special tree and refuse to sell it. Then a special little girl reminds them of the true meaning of Christmas and receives the tree as a generous gift.
I love all of the creative sticky wall activities that I have seen recently, and I have been waiting for the chance to try one out. We used contact paper to make a large rectangle on the cabinets. First the kids just had fun touching the sticky part of the paper. It was a neat sensory experience.
Then the big kids and I practiced ordering the pine needles (I cut them before the activity) from shortest to longest to create a Christmas tree. We also used the pine needles to make some of the letters we have learned so far.
Big Buddy continued to play with the sticky wall long after our guided activities. He made a lot of fun discoveries along the way.
Tinker preferred decorating the sticky wall with our colored pom poms.
Pine Needle Painting
We have been exploring painting with various objects, so I thought it might be fun to let the kids paint with the pine needles. At first it seemed like it wasn’t going to work so well, but after trying out a few different ways to dip and hold the pine needles the kids came up with some great creations.
They seemed to prefer smacking the pine needles on the paper in a fly swatter type motion. It wasn’t near as messy as I anticipated, and they really liked the end results.
There are also a few great pine needle activities over at Teach Preschool. The pine needle paper plate wreaths look very cute.
Have you done any activities involving pine needles?
GET A FULL SET OF CHRISTMAS THEME ACTIVITIES
The 169-page Christmas Lesson Plan Set includes hands-on activities and these additional printables:
1) Beginning Letters Gift Sorting Game (in color and b/w)
2) Reindeer Math Mats (2 versions in color and b/w)
3) My Christmas Senses Activity Book Making Pieces
4) 0-35 Christmas Number Cards (2 versions in color and b/w)
5) Christmas Counting Syllables Sorting Game (in color and b/w)
6) Christmas Picture-Word Cards (in color and b/w)
7) Ornament Play Dough Mats
8) Candy Cane Play Dough Writing Task Cards (shapes, uppercase letters, lowercase letters, number 0-20)
9) Christmas Light Patterns Activity Pieces (in color and b/w)
Also available on Teachers Pay Teachers.
Less stress, more connecting this holiday season? Yes, PLEASE!
From the arrival of fall to Halloween to Thanksgiving and Christmas, the last four months of the year can be a wonderful opportunity for making family memories and spending time together, but they can also be stressful as we try to collect ideas, recipes, and activities to try together.
Stephanie Morgan, founder of Modern Parents Messy Kids, a site that’s been voted Best Craft Blog in Parents Magazine and one of babble.com’s Top 50 Craft Mom Blogs, recently released a new eBook to help us have a little less stress and more time to connect with family this year.
Stephanie’s goal is to make it easier on all of us to enjoy the holidays with our kids. Hands-On Holidays is 100 pages full of her family’s very favorite ways to connect as a family over the holiday season. I love the convenience of having so many ideas in one place, and most of them are simple enough for even my toddler to participate in.
The book includes picture book suggestions, DIY decor, activities, and treats. Bonus sections also offer even more ideas to enjoy. Click here to view more details.