Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Lets Learn About Winter

Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Lets Learn About Winter
Photo by Matej from Pexels

Teach/Review the 4 Seasons and how a cycle works

Possible circle/center concepts:

  • Animals that live in cold climates
    • how do they survive?
    • how do they stay warm?
    • what do they eat?
    • do they have shelter?
    • weather
      • what kind of weather do we have in the winter?
      • is the weather the same here during winter as it is somewhere else?
      • what do we wear in the winter?
      • what are some winter activities we enjoy?

Select a category

Art | Math | Science & Sensory | Writing | Manipulatives | Dramatic Play | Music & Movement | Gross Motor | Sample Single Day Lesson Plan

Academic/developmental category legend
  • O – open ended
  • S – science and/or sensory incorporated
  • P – pre prepped projects
  • M – memory/keepsake
  • F – fine motor activity
  • G – gross motor activity
  • A – academic- letter, number, shape and/or color recognition
  • L – language development

Art

Snowflakes (O,F)
  • materials needed
    • blue watercolor paints
    • eyedroppers
    • coffee filters
    • kid-friendly scissors
Snowstorm (O,F)
  • materials needed
    • eyedroppers
    • silver & blue watercolor paints
    • cotton balls
    • yellow paint & q-tips (for lightening bolts)
    • rainbow colored finger paint
    • construction paper
    • glue
Ice paint (O,S,F)
  • materials needed
    • pre-frozen ice cubes (water & watercolor paint)
    • eyedroppers
    • watercolor paint with dissolved rock salt
    • card-stock
Blue & white art (O,A)
  • materials needed
    • glue
    • construction paper
    • several random blue and white scraps
    • strings
    • streamers
    • beads
    • any other loose items you’d like to throw in
Arctic animal tracks (O,F)
  • materials needed
    • assorted toy arctic animals
    • construction paper
    • nontoxic washable paint of choice
Build-a-Snowman (O,A,F)
  • materials needed
    • assorted shapes to be used as snowman “parts,”
    • scissors
    • markers
    • glue
Snowman footprint (M)
  • materials needed
    • white nontoxic washable paint
    • 8.5×11 construction paper cut in half for footprints
    • small multi-colored buttons
    • cut out of construction paper:
      • black hats
      • multi-colored scarfs
      • orange noses
      • brown “twig” arms

Math

Patterning with blue and white Unifix cubes
Visual graph (circle time)
explaining that graphs are used to record/keep track of information and count as a class items related to winter worn to school by class; i.e. coat colors, rain boots/types of shoes, favorite type of winter weather
Counting and sorting cotton balls
“snowballs” (use tweezers to incorporate fine motor and ten frame trays. https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/search/products/page-1/sort-best/num-24/loc-036?view=grid&Ntt=ten%20frame)
Counting and sorting blue, white and clear decorative rocks, “ice cubes”
(use ten frame trays)

Science and Sensory

Polar island
(sensory bin filled with ice, scoopers and toy arctic animals)
Snow day
(sensory bin filled with instant snow, scoopers and toys of choice, i.e. animals, people…)
Melting ice
(observation, weight of cube vs. weight of liquid once melted, measure size of the cube, measure the volume of liquid collected)
Blubber experiment
(how animals stay warm in winter)

Writing

S is for snowflake
(practice writing Ss, trace and color snowflake)
Journal writing
draw and dictate (teacher assisted)

Manipulatives

Styrofoam snowballs
(Styrofoam balls, golf tees, rubber bands)
Snowman sequence cards
Beaded icicles
(white and blue beads, white and blue pipe cleaners)
Making snow people
(Play-doh with Mr. Potato Head parts)

Dramatic Play

Hibernating animals
(build a cave, include hibernating stuffed animals of choice)
Winter dress-up
(clothing worn during the winter season)
Hot Chocolate Bar
(plastic mugs, brown fabric or tissue paper, cotton balls or white pom poms)

Music and Movement

Going on a Bear Hunt
(my favorite version is by Greg and Steve)
Arctic animal “yoga”
(imitate the movements and characteristics of animals found in the arctic)
“If All the Raindrops” by Barney

Gross Motor

“Snowball” toss
(fuzzy white balls tossed into basket or bucket from a distance)
Ice skating
(white plastic table cloths from dollar store taped down to carpeted area – closely monitored by teacher, have just a few children at a time “skate” around in their socks)

Sample Single Day Lesson Plan

Morning Activities (drop-off)Find Name (practice writing it). Sign in
Free Play activities
Morning CircleJobs
Calendar/Count/Flag
Introduce/go over Letter and Number of the week
Book – The Mitten
Song – “If All the Raindrops” (Barney)
Ten Frame charts – (1) Everyone with long sleeves (2) Everyone with short sleeves
Centers
ArtSnow Storm
Lay out materials and explain to students that they will be creating a picture of a snow storm
BlocksBuild an igloo
Include arctic animal puppets
Dramatic PlayCave with hibernating animals
ManipulativesStyrofoam snowballs
WritingS is for Snowflake
Sensory/SciencePolar Island
MathIce cube count and pattern with ten frame

*Not all of the activities in this thematic unit are my own but have been adopted and/or adapted from activities found online (via Google and/or Pinterest) and ECE teacher seminars

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Let’s talk about it. What would you add to this unit?

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