Introducing the Interesting Penguin
Many young children like learning about penguins, and teachers can encourage this interest by finding creative ways to plan penguin projects for preschool classrooms. The following three projects combine basic facts about penguins, such as how they are found in snowy climates and how they keep their eggs warm and protected, with creative methods of using various art materials to make cute crafts.
Egg Felt Craft
- Black felt penguin body pieces (shaped to include head and wings, 1 per child)
- Black felt penguin beak (1 per child) and feet (2 per child) pieces
- White felt penguin belly pieces (to be glued on top of body, 1 per child)
- White felt eye pieces (2 per child)
- White felt egg pieces (1 per child)
- School glue
- Show the children how to assemble and glue the felt pieces together to make a penguin. Leave a space under the body and between the feet for the egg. Explain to the students that penguins "sit" on their eggs until they are ready to hatch.
- When the felt penguin has dried, ask the students to glue their eggs in the space between the feet, creating a parent and "unborn baby" penguin craft.
- Blue construction paper (1 piece per child)
- Large cotton balls (enough for each child to cover the bottom of their papers)
- Penguin cut-outs (shaped to include beak, wings, and feet, 2 or 3 per child)
- Black washable markers
- School glue
- Instruct the students to glue their cotton balls onto the bottom half of their construction paper backgrounds. The cotton represents the snowy and icy environment where penguins live.
- Ask the children to glue their penguin cut-outs onto the paper so that their feet are touching the snow. The penguins can be walking in a line or spread apart and standing in the snow.
- Give each preschooler a black marker, and ask the students to color the heads, wings, and feet. Leave white spaces for eyes and for the front of the body.
Model Magic Craft
- White Model Magic (one or two handfuls per child)
- Black craft paint
- Paintbrushes (1 per child)
- Wiggly eyes (2 per child)
- School glue
- Show the children how to use their Model Magic to make a penguin (oval body, circular head, triangular beak, wings, and feet).
- After the penguin models have hardened, instruct the children to paint the penguin heads, backs, and wings with black craft paint, leaving the front of the bodies white. The beaks and feet can be painted black as well.
- When the paint has dried, ask the preschoolers to glue wiggly eyes onto their penguins' heads.
These penguin projects for preschool students can be displayed in the classroom throughout winter or sent home for the children to enjoy and play with. By assembling these crafts, preschoolers will strengthen their artistic skills while increasing their knowledge of penguins as a species.