Making calendars with preschoolers is a fun activitiy that teaches young children about the days of the week and months of the year. The following lesson offers step-by-step instructions for making a calendar in the preschool classroom.
Preschool Calendar Lesson Preparation
- To teach the days of the week and the months of the year; and
- To create a calendar for the coming year.
- Pre-printed calendar pages*
- Paints, brushes, and other art materials
- Quotations, poems, rhymes
- Pictures and photographs
*Some sources of pre-printed calendar pages:
Step-by-Step Lesson for Preschool Calendar Activity
Step 1: Print out a cover with the year on it.
Making calendars is an excellent activity to introduce the concept of time. Talk about the significance of years. For example, tell the preschooler that this year is 20_ _ . Next year, it will be 20 _ _.
Step 2: Decorate the cover with some photos or other images such as clipart or cut-out pictures.
Some ideas on the type of covers may include what year it will be (e.g., “Year of Astronomy”). Or, get some favorite photos from the past year and create a collage. Other options: pictures of favorite characters, drawings or photography by the preschooler, and photos of favorite animals or things.
You may also add some favorite quotations, passages, or anecdotes. This may be connected with a lesson on literacy.
Step 3: Print out calendar pages.
This may depend on the type of calendar you wish to make; it can be one-month-a-page, two months on a page, or even a whole 12-month calendar on one page.
Just try to allot a space for drawings, paintings, words, and other decorative items on the calendar.
Step 4: Decorate the different calendar pages.
Talk about the different months of the year and the different days of the week, pointing out where they are on the calendar as you decorate the pages.
You might want to consider talking about months based on special events. For example, your preschooler may have a birthday on August. Point where the date is on the calendar. Talk about other birthdays and public holidays such as Independence Day or Christmas or Valentine’s Day.
When teaching the days of the week, talk about the routine schedules for the week. For example, your preschooler goes swimming on Saturdays, attends Kindergarten from Monday to Wednesday, and visits the grandparents on Sundays. Show these days on the calendar.
You might also want to teach songs and rhymes about months and days.
Step 5: Bind the calendar pages together if you have a few pages.
How you bind the calendar will depend on your resources. You can make something simple such as just punching a few holes and attaching strings.
Some Decorating Ideas for the Preschool Calendar Pages
If you’re stuck for ideas on how to decorate the calendar pages, here are some painting ideas that you might consider doing:
Create butterfly paintings. First fold the page in to two. Then, unfold the page. Then, spread paints on one side and then fold the page again. Press together. Then, open the page again.
Create handprint paintings. There are several ways you can do this. One interesting way is to spread different colors on a palette (or plate), and then ask the preschooler to put their hands on the palette/plate and create handprints on the calendar pages.
Create footprint paintings. This is a variation of the handprint painting.
Create scribble paintings. Just allow the preschooler to paint anything on the page.
Create string paintings. Dip a piece of string on a liquid paint then create a pattern on the page. Get another piece of string and dip on a different color of paint. Keep doing this until you have a few strings of paint. Put another piece of paper on top of the page then start pulling the strings out.
There are many other ideas, but hopefully these activities should help you to put together a great preschool calendar activity that teaches months of the year and days of the week as well as creates a special gift for family and friends.