Explore how people and animals live in cold weather with your preschoolers this winter using these Preschool Winter Theme activities. Practice important early learning skills while investigating Ice and Snow, the Alpine Tundra, Tundra Animals, and Life in the Arctic. You’re definitely not going to want to miss these engaging ideas that are perfect for your winter preschool themes!
I’m so excited to share these adorable preschool winter theme lesson plan ideas with you today! We’re so in love with this thematic study for early learners. It’s perfect for teaching preschoolers important early learning skills in a fun and hands-on way
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A huge thanks to Experience Early Learning (formerly Mother Goose Time) for providing us with their Experience Preschool curriculum for free in exchange for sharing our honest and authentic stories resulting from our personal experiences. It’s been such a huge blessing to us! As always, my opinions on awesome stuff for little kids are 100% my own.
Not only are we working to develop important communication and fine motor skills, but we’re also learning about the world around us. We’re investigating physical science concepts and experimenting with natural and earth science too.
Ice and Snow
Week one of our preschool winter theme was spent investigating Ice and Snow. Our daily topics were Snowflake, Snowman, Icicle, Igloo, and Freezing & Melting.
This week was so much fun! We practiced cutting while making snowflakes with construction paper, built snowmen with cloud dough that we made ourselves, learned what happens when salt touches ice, and experimented with how to melt ice using both warm and cold water. This week was also a great opportunity to learn about states of matter.
Our favorite activities this week were definitely making snowflakes using craft sticks and exploring dripping water. Eyedroppers are always a favorite, especially with liquid watercolors. We also used watercolors to paint letters on ice, counted foil icicles, and explored painting on foil to create Winter process art.
We practiced fine motor skills by grabbing ice cubes from a bowl of water using tongs or tweezers. Have you ever tried freezing small manipulatives in ice and then working together to melt the ice? It was definitely lots of fun!
During week two, we explored the Alpine Tundra with topics such as Mountain Hiking, Spruce Tree, Tree Line, Mountaintop, and Skiing.
Our favorite STEAM activities this week were exploring avalanches using cardboard tubes, tape, and marbles or pompoms. We also designed and constructed our own paintbrushes from a variety of materials including pine needles, sticks, and rubber bands. When we were finished, We explored painting with both our DIY brushes as well as the nature items
We measured pinecones by determining if they were longer or shorter than other items and made letters using nature items such as sticks and pinecones. This week’s favorite was definitely engineering ski ramps. We used cardboard, foil, tape, marbles, and cotton balls to create a “ski mountain” and keep the marbles on track while going down the ramp.
For pre-writing practice, we made “tracks” in pretend snow. I poured white sparkly sand that I had found at the craft store a while back onto a plate for the perfect Winter-themed writing tray.
The focus for week three of our preschool winter theme was Tundra Animals. Our daily topics were Penguin, Polar Bear, Yak, Snow Leopard, and Arctic Fox.
We did lots of wonderful activities this week including building and measuring mountains using building materials and rulers. The kids also enjoyed a fun resist experiment to explore how animals hide in the snow. We drew an arctic fox on white paper with white crayons and then painted over it with watercolor.
This week’s favorites were of course the paper plate penguins and polar bear masks. We also enjoyed learning about camouflage by making arctic fox process art. And you know what? It was super quick and easy too! We used white background paper, white napkins, twigs, and black foam adhesive, which meant lots of texture.
Learning about tundra animals meant the perfect opportunity to put together our own arctic habitat. We used a small container, cotton balls, blue gems, and of course animal figurines for this engaging and hands-on activity.
Life in the Arctic
During week four, we learned about life in the arctic and our topics were Arctic Gear, North Pole, Arctic Shelter, Arctic Transportation, and Iceberg.
There were two STEAM activities that were definitely favorites. The “blubber glove” using icy water, clear zip bags, and shortening was perfect for demonstrating how animals use blubber to stay warm. We also experimented with melting icebergs using squirt bottles. Another great idea to wrap up this week is investigating different forms of ice (crushed ice, ice cubes, chunks of ice) and how quickly they melt.
We also spent lots of time exploring ice this week. We practiced visual arts with ice painting and painted crushed ice using spray bottles and food coloring mixed with water. Another activity that we all enjoyed was our “arctic ice play” sensory bin. We grabbed a plastic container, filled it with ice water, and added animal figurines.
The lesson about arctic transportation included an adorable “snow tracks” stamping activity. We used chipboard and foam tape to make our own stamping tools and then we made imprints or tracks on our paper.
By now you should have plenty of ideas for putting together an awesome preschool winter theme. If you have a favorite printable or activity to add to the list, be sure to leave a comment and share!
Don’t forget to stop by next week if you’re interested in seeing what we’re up to with our safari preschool theme!