Almost every child I know loves play dough! In addition to being great for strengthening hand muscles, it’s just fun to play with. It was the perfect “base” for a simple forest animal small world activity.
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printable forest animal activity
In addition to having fun, this forest animal small world allows children to explore these early learning concepts:
- Fine motor skills
- Vocabulary development
- Oral language development
- Letter and word knowledge
Print out the labeled forest animal cards. I’d suggest cutting them out and laminating them, as they’ll be sturdier that way.
For this open-ended small world activity, let the kids lead the way! Place all of the items out on a tray or a table, then see what they do. I think this would be perfect after reading a forest animal book, or after learning a bit about animals that live in the forests nearby.
Children might use the printable animals to tell silly stories. They could possibly use the play dough to create a forest floor for the animals to play on. Perhaps the mini pine cones (or regular-sized pine cones, if you have them) could act as the trees in the forest.
Related: Winter Small World Play
These printable forest animals could be used in a variety of other activities, too.
- Place them in a pocket chart or a file folder. Then the kids could use them as a mini word wall, of sorts.
- Have children match up small animal toys to the appropriate printable animal.
- Bring out some letter tiles, then help the children make the animal words.
How would your children use these printable forest animals? Would a play dough small world be fun for them?
More #TeachECE activities around a forest theme
Be sure to pop over and see what the rest of the Early Childhood Education team has to share –
Forest Animal Play Dough Small World by Fun-A-Day