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Beep Beep: School Bus Activities to Get the Wheels Turning

written by: Lisa King • edited by: Wendy Finn • updated: 9/11/2012

This August hop on the bus and let your preschoolers take a ride down discovery lane where they will learn prepositions, new lyrics to the popular song, “The Wheels on the Bus," beginning sounds and more.

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    School Bus Unit

    The start of the school year just wouldn’t be the same without an exciting bus unit. Young children find the big, yellow, school bus exciting and intriguing and I have yet to see a child who can’t wait to take a ride in a bus. That is why student’s wheels will be turning with this preschool school bus coloring unit that will make learning reading, math and language all downhill from here.

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    Wheels on the Bus Activity

    birthday party 031 birthday party 028 The Wheels on the Bus song is a favorite song for teachers and students alike. After singing this popular song, and doing the actions, the children will make their own bus with turning wheels, doors that open and shut and wipers that go swish, swish.

    Materials:

    • Copy of bus template
    • Brads
    • Glue
    • Yellow and black crayons or markers
    • Photo of the child

    How to Make:

    Print a copy of the bus template in the media gallery for each student and cut out the bus frame, windshield wipers, doors and wheels. Students will color the bus, wipers and doors yellow and the wheels black. Attach the wheels and wipers with a brad so they move. Glue a photo of the child on the doors and then glue the sides of each door on the door located on the bus frame so they open and close. Let preschoolers turn the wheels, open the doors and move the wipers while singing the song, “The Wheels on the Bus."

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    Bus Prepositions

    school bus project Teach your preschool class prepositions and new lyrics to the popular song, “The Wheels on the Bus." After singing the new lyrics to the song that are listed below, print out a copy of the "Little, School Bus Preposition Printable Book," that is located in the media gallery. Staple the book pages together. Instruct children to cut out the bus found at the end of the book. The teacher will poke a hole in each bus, attach a piece of yellow yarn to the bus and tie it to the book. While reading their books children can make their bus go over, under, up, down and all around town.

    The Little School Bus (Tune of Wheels on the Bus)

    “The little, school bus goes over (under) the bridge, over the bridge, over the bridge. The little, school bus

    goes over the bridge on its way to school."

    “The little, school bus goes up (down) the hill, up the hill, up the hill, the little, school bus goes

    up the hill on its way to school."

    “The little, school bus goes through the tunnel (woods, city, country, puddle etc.), through the tunnel, through the tunnel, the little school bus goes through the tunnel on its way to school."

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    Clap That Number

    Students will practice number recognition and counting with this fun activity. Print out a copy of the preschool bus coloring sheet for each student located in the media gallery. Instruct students to color their bus. Give each student a different number from 1-10 and have them write the correct number on their bus after coloring it. Cut the buses out and tape them to the student's backs. The teacher will call on a child to come to the front of the class. The child will stand with his or her back towards the class. The children will look at the number on the bus and clap the correct number of times. Keep playing until everyone has had a chance and all numbers have been clapped.

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    What Letter Does it Start With?

    The teacher will print out a copy of a bus template and write "B,b," on it. Copy and print out several picture cards. Make sure a lot of the cards start with the letter B for bus. Students will sit on the floor in a circle. The teacher will place the bus in the middle of the circle and give each student a card. The teacher will call on students to name their picture card and what letter it starts with. If it starts with "B," children will walk to the bus and place the card on top of it. Continue until all the cards have been used.

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    Little Bus Driver Game

    Point out the stop sign located on the bus and ask students what it means and how the bus driver uses it. Tell children the stop sign on the bus alerts vehicles to stop so children can cross the road safely to get to the bus or back home. Explain the need for traffic lights and stop signs. Remind children they must always look both ways before crossing the street.

    Children will love pretending to be bus drivers while learning the importance of obeying traffic lights and stop signs. Children will line up at one end of the room. They will pretend to drive a bus. The teacher will hold up a red, green or yellow octagon. Children must obey the traffic signs. Students who fail to obey the signs will be given a pretend traffic violation ticket stating a certain amount of minutes to sit out of the game. Children who drive the bus safely without a citation will receive a "safe bus driver award." Continue playing until all children receive the award.

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    Vehicle Track Science

    Tell children that just like animals, all vehicles leave tracks in the mud and snow that can be used to identify the type and model of vehicle. Show pictures of a variety of tires or take children in the school parking lot to compare the different grooves on the tires.

    Materials:

    • Old clothing or paint shirts
    • Paint
    • Butcher paper
    • Toy vehicles

    What to do:

    Purchase a variety of toy cars, buses, trucks etc. Cover the floor with newspaper. Line the floor with butcher paper. Give students containers of different colors of paint. Instruct students to dip the tires of their vehicles in the paint and roll on the butcher paper. Compare the tracks that different vehicles make. Tip: Before this lesson, send a note home to parents instructing them to dress the child in old clothes or provide long paint shirts.

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    Additional Activities

    Tell children buses are not only used to get kids to school. City buses provide transportation to people who are unable to drive or do not have a vehicle. Show pictures of different buses and explain the procedure of purchasing a ticket and riding on a bus. Name other forms of transportation we use to get from one place to another. The preschool school bus coloring unit is a great way to begin a looking at transportation. Bus crafts and activities get students wheels turning. Hope your class enjoys the ride!

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    References

    All activities, coloring sheets and pritable book, courtesy of Lisa King, all rights reserved.