Sunday, October 18, 2015

Fall Fun for Kindergarten

I was out shopping last weekend and stopped by JoAnn Fabric and Craft Store and was so excited to find that they had all of their fall craft supplies 50% off! I picked up so much because the prices were so great! My next stop was Michaels, I needed a few things to go with what I had bought at JoAnn. I told my husband he could just wait in the car, I would only be a minute or two. HA! You would think after 12 years of marriage he would know better!

I walked in and guess what?! Michaels had their fall crafts 50% off too! JACKPOT! I stocked up on some more goodies, so I should be set for the next 5 years.. or at least until next fall. Later that day I popped in to Target because..well, do you need a reason to stop by Target?! They didn't let me down either...they had a great selection of fall/Halloween stuff perfect for the classroom. Once I got home and admired organized all of my new treasures, I couldn't wait to make good use of everything I bought. I put together a few fall centers for our little people and wanted to share them with you. Everything pictured came from JoAnns, Michaels or Target.

The first center I made I used small orange plates that I found in the Halloween section at Target. They cost a dollar. I found these adorable (can I use that word to describe spiders???) 3D spider erasers for a dollar. I think these were in the Halloween section. The erasers only come 8 to a pack, so I bought a couple of packs. 

To make this center, I used a Sharpie to draw a spider web on each plate and wrote a number in the middle. I am not the best artist, so please don't judge! Spider webs aren't perfectly round so that's why mine aren't either, yeah I'm just going to go with that excuse. Haha! The kids use the erasers to count and put that many spiders on the "web" (plate). I only went to 10 because that's the numbers we are working on this time of year.

As I'm writing this, I remembered that there are spiders in the Backyard Bugs Set that I have from Learning Resources. If you have that set those spiders would work too! Don't these guys look cute sitting in their paper plate webs? Okay, that will be the last time I use the word spider and cute in the same sentence. 

So of course I had to make a recording sheet. I love having an accountability piece, whenever possible, in my centers. It keeps my little friends on task, holds them accountable for their time, and it's nice to have something tangible to send home to parents. For the recording sheet, they read the number and color that many spiders to show the number.

You can grab your own copy of the recording sheet by clicking on the picture below.

The next center I made is this pumpkin seed counting and number sequence activity. Yes, I know pumpkin seeds are not orange and black, but we are pretending! The pumpkin cut-outs came from JoAnns and the "seeds" came from Michaels. The little gems had glue dots on the back of them but I was worried about my little friends taking the "seeds" off, so I put a small dot of E6000 glue on the back of the seeds before adhering them to the pumpkins. Let them dry overnight. Again, we are working on numbers 1-10.

If you don't have the pumpkin cut outs or gems. You could use a pumpkin pattern on the die cut machine (or make orange circles and pretend their pumpkins) and draw on the seeds.

Students count the seeds on the pumpkins and put them in order to 10. Afterwards they work on the practice page to show their work (and get in a little extra cutting practice). 

You can grab your own copy of the recording sheet by clicking on the picture below.

I made this activity for our little friends that are working on letter recognition and could also use some extra support in the fine motor department. I got the large pumpkins at JoAnns and the gems came from Michaels. My kids, every year, LOVE anything that sparkles and shines. I think they really feel like they are working with valuable treasure!! Hey, whatever works and motivates! So, when I saw these little jewels I knew they would be an instant hit. It's just another way to put some fun into learning letters! To make this activity I wrote the letters on the large pumpkins. Be sure to write the letters rather large. Note: Let the ink dry overnight because I smeared my first pumpkin. Oops! Then I added some bling and we are ready to roll. 

The kids use the gems to form the letter on the pumpkin. I love this activity because they are practicing letter formation and fine motor skills at the same time. The kids love it because of the fancy treasure pieces they get to use. It's a win-win. To show their work, on the recording sheet they dab (or color) to show the letters they worked on.

You can grab your own copy of the recording sheet by clicking on the picture below.

We spend a good amount of time counting the number of words in a sentence because it's an important pre-reading and pre-writing skill. Students first need to recognize that groups of letters makes up words. We discuss how words have meaning and are separated by spaces to make a sentence. When we read and write we focus on one word at a time and when in writing we need to separate our words.

 Since this is a skill that we work on a lot, I included it in my no-prep A Dab of Learning: Fall Edition, but I also wanted to make a hands-on activity that would go along with those pages. 

I used sentence strips that I already had and these pumpkin cut-outs that I got at Michaels. They were not 50% off, but were only $1.99. They have a white sticky dot on the back as they are meant to be stickers. I took the dots off because I am not using them as stickers so now they are pumpkin manipulatives! You don't have to use pumpkins, you could use small erasers, snap cubes, or whatever you have in your classroom.

I wrote sentences on the sentence strips and cut them to size. I used sentences with 3 words up to 6 or 7 words. We read the sentence together and matched a pumpkin to each word. They count the pumpkins to see how many words are in the sentence. This is a great way to reach those tactile learners.

Pictured below is one of follow up activity pages that we use for this activity. Students dab a pumpkin for each word in the sentence. As mentioned earlier, the pages can be found in the no-prep A Dab of Learning: Fall Edition. You can check that packet out here.

Here's some more fall activities we are working. These come from the It's All Fun and Games: Fall Edition. I love this series because it is so much fun for the kids. They love completing the activities or playing the games with a partner or small group. As a bonus it is so, so easy prep! 

This activity is to practice beginning sounds. Students say the name of the picture on the card. They find the corresponding letter on their paper and trace it to match the color of the border on the card.

For "The Colors of Fall", students say the name of the uppercase letter on the card. They find the matching lowercase letter on their paper and trace it using the color from the card.

This game has been so much fun! There are 4 different playing mats included. Students take turns using the spinner to spin either a letter, word, or sentence. Then they cover a space on their board to match their spin. The first player to cover their board wins the game. The adorable leaves that we used for game pieces were a big hit! I got the leaf cut-outs at Target but I also saw similar ones at JoAnns.

A little sight word practice here. We spelled our sight words using the pumpkin letters. There is an optional recording/accountability page for this activity, but it didn't make it in the picture!

This is one of the rhyming mats in the packet. I keep rhyming simple at first and primarily stick to easy to recognize CVC words. Students match the picture cards to the rhyming picture on the mat. Again, there is a recording/accountability page for this activity too (not pictured). You could definitely use this activity without the accountability piece.

Before we begin making ten, we work hard on making 5. I found these little red cups at the Dollar Tree awhile back. They are the perfect size for little hands. I used the yellow/red two sided counters that I've had for years. We put five in a cup. The kids put their hand over the cup and shake, shake, shake. The counters are foam so there is NO noise! win-win! They lay the counters on their mat and dab or color the circles to show how they made 5.

This is a fun way that we practice number writing. Students spin the spinner and trace the number using the color on the spinner. Once all of the numbers are traced, they practice writing the numbers on their own.

I included some no prep activities in this packet as well. Here's an example of one of them. Students roll the die, find the matching set of dots and color it. 

I also put the page pictured above in a page protector and turn it into a partner game. Each player gets their own color of snap cubes. The first player rolls the die, finds an apple with the matching number, and covers it with their snap cube. Then the next player rolls and covers their number. However, if the a player rolls a number that has already been covered, they can bump off their opponent's single snap cube and take the spot. But, if a player rolls the same number twice (without being bumped off) they can put another snap cube on top (like a king in checkers) and then they cannot be bumped off that number. Player with the most spaces covered at the end of the game wins.

We first played this game in a small group. Each student gets a game board (4 different game boards are included). Students take turns spinning the spinner and identifying the number represented on the ten frame. They find the matching number on their board and cover one space. If a player spins a ten frame and all of the spaces for that number have already been covered, they skip their turn. The first player to cover 4 in a row, in any direction, wins the game.

You can check out all 31 activities included in this packet by clicking on the pictures below.

Thanks for reading along!


  1. Thanks so much for the freebies! I love all your stuff. It is simple to make and easy for kids to use! Thanks for your hard work and willingness to share!

    1. hi Donna! Thank you so much for stopping by. So glad you love the activities!!! Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I appreciate your kindness! :)

  2. Thank you for the freebie treats. Wish there was a TpT treat fairy to help me pay for all the great stuff I am loading in my cart. Happy Fall!

    1. hi Betsy, so glad you loved the freebies and ideas!!! :)

  3. Great post! I love the paper plate spider web idea and am going to use it! Thanks for sharing your ideas and including a few freebies- it truly is appreciated!
    ~ Amy

    1. hi Amy,
      Thanks so much for stopping by. I'm so glad you walked away with a few new ideas. Hope your kiddos have a blast! :)

  4. OH MY WORD!!! What a treasure!!!! Thank you so much for creating this... and even providing freebies!