Here are 15+ St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers to enjoy this March. Literacy, crafts, STEM, and more early learning activities for a St. Patrick’s Day the preschoolers are sure to love.
Related: St. Patrick’s Day Beginning Sounds
Do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with your preschoolers, or is it a holiday you’d rather skip? I know not all teachers enjoy bringing St. Patrick’s Day into the classroom, but I have to admit that I love it.
The name Mary Catherine might have already clued you in, but I’ve got some Irish heritage. And in college, I was able to spend a year living in Cork, Ireland. I have some amazing friends, and some very fond memories, from that time. All of that to say that I definitely enjoy a good St. Patrick’s Day theme with the kids.
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Get a week’s worth of lesson plans for St. Patrick’s Day here.
St. Patrick’s Day Activities for Preschoolers
Over the years, we’ve done a wide variety of St. Patrick’s Day activities in both preschool and kindergarten. Here are some of our favorites. All of them are kid-tested, teacher-approved!
I’ve broken them down into categories to make it easier to locate what you’re looking for. We have literacy, science, art and crafts, math, and sensory activities for St. Patrick’s Day. There’s even a special category for leprechaun shenanigans!
Be sure to tell me about some of your own preschool traditions for the holiday, too. I’m always up for some new ideas, especially if they’ve been a hit in your classroom.
Literacy Activities for St. Paddy’s Day
Let’s start with some literacy ideas to try this March! We’ve got fine motor skills, letters, language and vocabulary development, and early writing fun for your students.
Listen to some St. Patrick’s Day songs for preschoolers with your students! Integrate some of these songs during your music and movement time for even more. Be sure to take some time to listen to traditional Irish music, too!
Let the kids practice their fine motor skills with our St. Patrick’s Day tracing printable. It’s free, and you can use a huge variety of manipulatives with it.
Make your own alphabet gold coins by writing directly on the coins or adding ABC stickers. Then add the coins to your favorite sensory material and put it in the literacy center. Cue tons of preschool alphabet activities with gold coins!
Make your own “If I Were a Leprechaun” class book with your students. You can find the free printable at the very bottom of this post. Or make your own with paper and markers.
- Ask each child “If you were a leprechaun, where would you hide your gold?”
- Write their answer down, or have them help do the writing.
- Then, encourage the kids to draw pictures based on their answers.
Related: St. Patrick’s Day Crafts
Science St. Patrick’s Day Activities for Preschoolers
Let your little leprechauns, I mean scientists, try these ideas this March. Lots of problem solving, investigating, and practice with the scientific method.
We love rainbow science! I have to admit, this is one of my favorite St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers (well, any kids really). It’s super colorful AND scented. Not to mention all the fizzing and bubbling. Every time I’ve tried this with kids, it has been a resounding success.
Let your students help you make a batch of gorgeous gold slime as part of a science activity. Be sure to talk about how the ingredients work together to make something new. Then add some gold coins and have the children explore and play.
St. Patrick’s Day Crafts and Art
Now let’s jump into some creative St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers! With all of the colors associated with this holiday, there’s a ton of inspiration.
These kids love making beaded shamrocks! This activity is truly a triple threat. It combines fine motor skill practice with patterning, all while being an engaging craft for children. If you want to incorporate another literacy element, turn them into name shamrocks (like these beaded name hearts).
All of my preschoolers really go into making a simple rainbow and pot of gold craft. They added a black pot to hold all of their “gold” (craft gems glued to the pot). Then colorful dot stickers were used to make a rainbow leading to the gold. I had fun watching who put the colors in rainbow-order and who enjoyed placing the stickers willy-nilly.
A bleeding tissue paper rainbow canvas is a great idea for a collaborative art project. The children can work together to assemble a rainbow “puzzle” on the canvas, discussing colors and rainbow order along the way.
St. Patrick’s Day Math Activities
We can’t forget about math when we’re putting together our St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers! I mean, it’s a holiday deeply associated with gold coins. Math is right there!
Grab a set of St. Patrick’s Day calendar numbers for your class. You can use them for SO MANY early math activities, as well as part of your traditional or linear calendars.
Play a gold coin dice game with your students:
- To set up the math game, set out a stack of plastic gold coins, a few dice, and a leprechaun’s pot.
- The kids can work together, rolling the dice and placing the appropriate amount of coins into the pot.
- They can also turn it into a competitive game if they prefer that option. If so, have the kids split the coins between the players. Players can take turns rolling two dice, and whoever gets rid of her coins first is the winner.
Use the printable gold coin 10-frames from our rainbow yarn sensory bin for more math fun. Your students hunt for coins and then add them to the ten-frames. Counting, number identification, and one-to-one correspondence all rolled up into one.
You can find even more ideas on our St. Patrick’s Day math page!
Sensory Activities for St. Paddy’s Day
Let’s break out the St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers that are focused on sensory play now. All of the colors are sure to captivate the kids!
Years ago, I experimented to figure out how to dye corn kernels. Since then, we’ve used the brightly colored corn in a rainbow corn sensory bin so many times. I highly recommend it any time of the year, but especially in March.
Make a shamrock sensory bin to teach children about the plant associated with St. Patrick’s Day. You can definitely change out the sensory base to gold and green items you already have in the classroom.
Use dyed chickpeas as the base for a St. Patrick’s Day sensory bin that explores the colors of Ireland. Pop in some gold coins and some shamrock (or rainbow!) mini erasers and you’re good to go.
Make rainbow confetti play dough for your class. Start with a base of green play dough and add rainbow barley for texture. You can replace the barley with buttons or small beads, too.
Be sure to check out 15+ St. Patrick’s Day sensory bottles to try with your kids, too!
And finally, we have the leprechaun shenanigans I promised earlier! Because we can’t talk about St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers without the leprechauns.
Ask the children how they would make a trap to catch a sneaky leprechaun. Encourage the children to make a plan on paper first. Then have them craft their own lego leprechaun traps. You can also do this challenge in the block center with blocks of all different shapes and sizes, too.
Next, have a leprechaun visit the classroom. I’ve had some mischievous leprechauns visit my classrooms over the years! Sometimes they make a big mess, sometimes it’s a smaller mess. Either way, there are always little leprechaun footprints (why do they always seem to get into that green paint?) left for the kids to find.
Fun tip: To make the leprechaun footprints, make your hand into a fist. Paint the side of your pinky finger and the side of your hand right by it. Keeping your hand fisted, press onto a piece of paper or hard surface. Then dip your pointer finger into the paint and add five “toes” to the footprint.
After the leprechaun’s shenanigans, sometimes a leprechaun hunt will arise naturally. I don’t usually plan one for the kids, but there have been multiple years when groups of children set one up all on their own! To me, the way the children extended the leprechaun’s visit was even better than anything I could have planned in its place.
St. Patrick’s Day Books for Kids
I highly recommend pairing some books with your St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers. There are many to choose from on the topic of Ireland, leprechauns, rainbows, and the holiday in general. What are your favorite books to read to the kids around St. Patrick’s Day?
Here are some ideas for you:
- St. Patrick’s Day by Gail Gibbons
- How to Catch a Leprechaun by Adam Wallace
- St. Patrick’s Day in the Morning by Eve Bunting
- There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover by Lucille Colandro
Even More St. Patrick’s Day Activities for Preschool Kids
Here are more ideas you should check out:
If you’re looking for more, please come by my St. Paddy’s Pinterest board.
What are some of your favorite St. Patrick’s Day activities for preschoolers? Feel free to drop them in the comments below!
Done-For-You St. Patrick’s Day Resources
Let Preschool Teacher 101 help you with fully-developed preschool resources perfect for St. Patrick’s Day. Click on the images below to grab your own:
You can also find us on Teachers Pay Teachers, and be sure to sign up for the waiting list for The Pack from Preschool Teacher 101.
Grab Your Free Printable Here
If you want to make the “If I Were a Leprechaun” class book, I have a printable available to members of Fun-A-Day’s email community. Enter your email in the form below to have it sent to your inbox.
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Betty Boop says
I am following you on Google + from WSM Blog Hop. Your preschool projects are so great!
Mary Catherine says
Thanks so much for stopping by! Hope you’re having a great weekend. 🙂
Terri Paulson-Sasaki says
I love all your activities, adorable.
Mary Catherine says
Thanks for stopping by, Terri. Hope your weekend is going well! 🙂
Such fun St. Patty Day ideas! No doubt that your kiddos loved every single minute of it! 🙂
Mary Catherine says
Thanks, Amanda! Yes, they certainly seemed to have a TON of fun. 🙂
What a lovely peak into your classroom. I would be so happy to send my daughter to you every day! The activities all seem really rich and very varied.
Mary Catherine says
Thank you so much Rachel! That is the highest praise for me. Totally made my day. 🙂
Seemi @ Trillium Montessori says
What fun activities, Mary Catherine! Love the leprechaun footprints 🙂
Mary Catherine says
Thanks so much, Seemi! I had so much fun checking out your Montessori activities. Hope this finds you well. 🙂