Inside: Want to add some preschool squirrel activities to your science area? Here are some easy ideas that encourage hands-on exploration!
We love to explore science year-round, but there is something special about fall.
We start the school year with magnets, then move onto sunflowers.
During the third week of school, the squirrels and acorns are very visible outdoors. We see squirrels scampering across our play yard with acorns in their mouths. We are curious as to why they are carrying these acorns, and where are they going?
We came up with a hands-on way to explore squirrels and acorns that is very inviting to young children.
Putting Together Preschool Squirrel Activities at the Science Table
We got a new-to-us round table that is perfect for a science exploration center! In the past we’ve used the top of a shelf for our science displays, and it worked well. However, my co-teacher and I really wanted a science spot where our toddlers and preschoolers could sit and explore, with more room for hands-on exploration.
A week before school started, my co-teacher’s mother found a small round table at Goodwill and asked if we could use it. After moving a few pieces around while setting up the classroom for back-to-school, we knew this little table would be perfect for our science center.
Note – This activity was only for our preschoolers, not our toddlers, as the acorns are too small and would go into their mouths.
First, take a nature walk.
Fall is a wonderful time to take a nature walk with children. Have bags available so as your preschoolers find things like leaves, pinecones and acorns, they can be easily carried back to the classroom.
Then, have an area set up to place the found items.
I love using wood trays and bowls that I found at our local thrift shop.
You can also add other natural materials such as tree blocks.
A visual displayed vertically invites the preschoolers to the area.
I found photos online and added text, displaying them in plexiglass page holders. I also had cut a photo of a squirrel out of a nature magazine and laminated it.
I could not find our plush squirrel that we have used for many years, so I went on Amazon and found this little guy.
I love how he is holding a nut in his mouth, just like the squirrels we have seen outside.
For some fine motor fun, an acorn ice tray was also added to the table. I love the 1:1 correspondence taking place! (Note: I think I found the ice tray at a dollar store, but honestly cannot recall. There is this one from Amazon.)
Looking for more squirrel activities, along with free printables?
Check this out:
Our favorite science toys and materials:
More fun fall ideas:
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