## A Whale of a Time for Preschool Children

written by: Cheryl Gabbert • edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom • updated: 3/2/2012

Are you looking for some great activities to share with your children in preschool? Why not whales? Whale activities for preschool children facilitate the wonder of nature and the discovery of the world's biggest mammals. From science to art, whales make a great theme.

• slide 1 of 5

### Why Not a Whale Theme?

Now that it's summer, you're probably looking for some warm weather themes to share with your preschoolers. If you think a beach or sea theme would be good, why not think bigger and go with a whale theme? Actually, you could set aside a day just for whales in your seaside thematic unit. Whatever you decide, preschoolers love whales, and why wouldn't they? Whales are really big, they spray water, and they live in the ocean. With amazing facts like that, these whale activities for preschool are sure to grab any child's attention!

• slide 2 of 5

### Math

Counting Time: Whale Crackers

Whale crackers can provide a great snack as well as facilitate early math skills. Made like Goldfish crackers, whales are a favorite. They fit great with the theme, and you can do lots of fun math activities with them.

Objective:

• counting objects 1-10
• making groups or "pods" of various amounts

Materials:

• 10 Whale Crackers per student
• 1 "sea blue" napkin for each student

Directions:

Give each student a "sea blue" napkin and 10 Whale Crackers. Ask them to wait until the activity is over before they eat the crackers. (be sure to keep some extras on hand for those who can't resist) Use the crackers for several different math activities.

• Count all of the whales.
• Place a certain number of whales "in the sea". (on the napkin)
• Group the whales in sets or "pods" of 2 and 5.

When you're finished, it's snack time!

• slide 3 of 5

### Science

Experiment: How a Blue Whale Eats

Objective:

• This activity will show students how a blue whale filters its food.

Materials:

• glitter
• large clear plastic bowl of water
• comb

Directions:

Fill a large clear plastic bowl 2/3 full of water. Have a student sprinkle glitter in the bowl. Another student will run the comb across the surface of the water. Show the students how the comb collected glitter on it. This will demonstrate how a whale eats krill by filtering them through their baleen.

• slide 4 of 5

### Art

Paper Bag Blue Whale Craft

Use a large, brown grocery bag for this art project. This way, your preschoolers can make a BIG blue whale! Talk about the concept of big and little while making these "big" whales. Be sure to share the fact that the blue whale is the biggest animal to ever live on earth!

Objective:

• Students will practice fine motor skills such as cutting, painting, gluing, and taping.

Materials:

• 1 large, brown grocery bag per student
• poster or acrylic paint
• large paint brushes
• blue pipe cleaners
• scotch tape
• scissors