This Christmas engineering activity was a huge hit with my preschoolers!
It’s a simple, colorful engineering activity for kids to get into during the hustle of the holidays.
We had a blast as the kids planned and built with some fun materials.
Related: Engineering Activities for Kids
Christmas Engineering Activity in Preschool
We didn’t use that many materials, and I was able to grab all of them at the local craft store. You don’t have to make your Christmas engineering invitation as colorful as ours was. To keep it even simpler, just use plain mini craft sticks or flat toothpicks.
Glitter liquid watercolors – thank you, Discount School Supply!
Mini wooden craft sticks (somewhat like sturdier toothpicks)
Related: Castle Engineering Projects for Kids
Prepping the Christmas Engineering Fun
Before letting the kids at the activity, I dyed the little wooden sticks.
Yes, they would have been fine they way they were. But I am in love with my glitter liquid watercolors and wanted the sticks to be super festive.
To dye the sticks, place a handful in a baggie and add a few squirts of the watercolors. Then close the baggie and shake it up.
Once the wooden sticks are covered in color, spread the wet sticks on a a tray to dry.
What the Kids Did
The kiddos helped me sort out the glitter balls, putting all of the colors together.
One of my girls exclaimed, “They’re Christmas disco balls!” Needless to say, that’s how they were referred to the rest of the week. 🙂
I placed the colorful sticks out alongside the glitter balls and invited the children over.
Related: Amazing Catapults for Kids
Some of the children got started right away, while others took a little while to plan out what to make.
I decided to build alongside the children, too. We spent a good hour building, creating, and talking – it was so cathartic!
The glitter balls are small polystyrene balls covered in glitter, and the little wooden sticks are a bit sturdier than regular toothpicks.
The materials were perfect for little hands to manipulate and build with.
As usual, there were a variety of structures created with our blinged-out materials.
One child made a monster truck racetrack, while his brother made a robot.
There was also a cube, a few triangles, and a mini elf house.
I made an “epic Christmas castle” according to one of my boys.
We also had some pattern snakes built and then taken apart a few times. I love the wide variety of creations!
Related: Jingle Bell Activities for Kids
Some of the children took their structures home, while others decided to disassemble theirs.
I left the materials out in our math and fine motor center for the rest of the week, at the kids’ requests.
A few children decided to merge the materials with the trees from our Christmas tree geoboards!
Related: Christmas Tree Geoaboards
Learning with Christmas Engineering in Preschool
This Christmas engineering activity explored a variety of concepts. Here are a few:
- Fine motor skills
- Sorting by one attribute (color)
- 2D and 3D shapes
Would your children enjoy this Christmas engineering project? If you try it, I’d love to see photos shared over at Fun-A-Day’s Facebook page.
Christmas Resources for Preschool Teachers
Save time planning (and, really, you can use all the time you have around the holidays!) with already done-for-you resources from Preschool Teacher 101. There are lesson plans, math and STEM activities, and literacy resources just for you! Be sure to check out the membership options for even more savings. You can also find us on Teachers Pay Teachers.
Click on the photos below for more information about Christmas resources: