Friday, June 3, 2011

The Beach

June 5-11: The Beach

Book Suggestions:

Beach by Elisha Cooper
Where is the Baby's Beach Ball by Karen Katz
Maisey at the Beach by Lucy Cousins
Beach Babies Wear Shades by Michelle Colman
Beach Bugs by David A. Carter
Good Night Beach by Adam Gamble
On My Beach There are Many Pebbles by Leo Lionni
At the Beach by Anne Rockwell


Count Shells:
Materials: several shells, a bucket
Description: Lay several shells out in front of your toddler (or hide them around the room and have you toddler find them.) As they place each shell into the bucket, count them with your toddler. You could write the number 1-10 on a piece of paper and place one seashell on top of each number. Point the numbers as you count the seashells.
Skills Targeted: counting, number recognition, language development, one to one correspondence

Paint Seashells:
Materials: Seashells, paint, paintbrushes
Description: You and your toddler will have a blast decorating your own seashells. Provide different color paint and different paintbrushes for your toddler to use! While you are painting shells talk with your little one about how they can find seashells at the beach.
Skills Targeted: enhance creativity, color recognition, understand that seashells are found at the beach, language development, motor skill development

Write in Sand:
Materials: sand
Description: Place a good amount of sand on a paper plate, on the table or the ground in front of your toddler. Show them how to use their finger to draw in the sand. They can wipe it clear and start again and again. You could write letters or numbers in the sand and have your little one identify them! Talk about how you could find sand on the beach.
Skills Targeted: sensory development, motor skill development, letter recognition, number recognition

Dye Sand:
Materials: sand (found at a craft store such as Micheals), food coloring, jars, bowls
Description: Check out Family Crafts for a recipe on how to create your own colored sand. Once you have several different bowls of colored sand you can transfer them into plastic containers or jars for you toddler to look at.
Skills Targeted: sensory development, color recognition, follow directions

Sand Art:
Materials: sand, glue, paper (you could use the different colored sand from the activity above)
You and your todder can create a picture using sand. Paint or pour glue onto a piece of paper and have your little one sprinkle the the sand or colored sand all over the page. Shake access sand.
Skills Targeted: color recognition, encourage creativity, motor skill development, sensory development

Sand sinks:
Materials: sand, water, a glass or plastic jar
Description: Talk about the beach with your toddler. What things can you find at the beach? Sand and Water are two things found at the beach! Let your toddler help you put several spoons fulls of sand into a clear jar. Add some water to the jar. Close the jar and have your child shake it. (if you do not have a lid, your little one can stir the sand and water mixture with a spoon.) You and your toddler can observe the jar after it is shaken. What happens to the sand? What happens to the water? (the sand will eventually fall to the bottom and the water will stay on top.) This is what happens at the beach!
Skills Targeted: sensory development, observe and explore water and sand, language development, understand that sand sinks, understand a beach habitat, understand that water and sand are found at the beach
Take a Pretend trip to the beach:
Materials: umbrella, small pool, water, sand (optional)
Description: If you can't take your little one to a real beach, create your own beach environment in your backyard! Fill up a small swimming pool with water. You could even fill up another pool with sand. (optional) Put an umbrella over the pool, lay out a few towels, and gather some beach toys. You and your toddler can pretend that you are at the beach.
Skills Targeted: understand the beach habitat, sensory development, encourage pretend play, enhance imagination

Treasure Hunt:
Materials: a variety of different small objects that your child might recognize (warning: small objects may be choking hazards for your child. Please supervise them appropriately), sand, a large bucket or plastic tub
Description: Fill a large tub or bucket up with sand. Hide several small objects in the sand. Your toddler will have fun digging through the sand (they can use their hands, a spoon, a shovel etc.) to find the different objects. See if you little one can name and count the different objects that they find.
Skills Targeted: sensory development, counting, name different objects

Beach Collage:
Materials: sand, shells, paper fish, sticks (for driftwood), crayons, glue, paper, paintbrush
Description: Talk with your little one about things that they might see at the beach. Provide some objects found at the beach, such as sand, shells, etc. Color part of the paper blue for the water. Paint glue all over a piece of paper with a paint brush. Have your little on sprinkle sand all over the paper. Glue shells, wood, paper fish etc. onto the paper to create a beach scene collage.
Skills Targeted: understand a beach habitat, understand objects found at the beach, sensory development, motor skill development

Dry Sand/Wet Sand:
materials: sand, water, bowls or buckets
Description: You and your little one can compare and contrast dry and wet sand. Put some dry sand in a bowl or bucket. Put some sand into another bowl or bucket and have your child add some water to it. Allow your little one to touch and explore each bowl of sand. Talk about how each bowl of sand is the same and how they are different.
Skills Targeted: understand the opposites wet and dry, compare and contrast, sensory development, language development, exploration, understand that sand can be found at the beach

Beach Ball Fun:
Materials: beach ball
Description: Beach balls are found everywhere at the beach. Provide a beach ball for you child to play with. Practice rolling, throwing, hitting and kicking the beach ball with your toddler. Talk about the colors on the ball. You could even write all the letters of the alphabet or numbers on the beach ball with a permanent marker and have you little one name a letter or number when they catch the ball.
Skills Targeted: motor skill development, letter recognition, number recognition, encourage physical activity

Seashell Frame:
Materials: popsicle sticks, seashells, glue
Description: Your toddler can make a homemade picture frame simply by gluing seashells onto popsicle sticks. Arrange 4 popsicle sticks into a square (glue the corners together so that they are all attached). Have your toddler glue the seashells all over the popsicle sticks. You can glue one of your favorite pictures to the back to make a picture frame.
Skills Targeted: enhance creativity, motor skill development

Songs and Fingerplays:

To the Beach Today:
(sung to the tune of Mary Had a LIttle Lamb)

I'm going to the beach today,
beach today, beach today,
I'm going to the beach today
To swim, and splash, and play.

I'm going to dig in the sand,
in the sand, in the sand.
I'm going to dig in the sand.
And build a castle with my hands.

I'm going to find lots of shells,
lots of shells, lots of shells,
I'm going to find lots of shells.
It's going to be very swell!

(sung to the tune of Jingle Bells)

So much fun at the beach
I love to splash and play.
I make a hole in the sand
and there I stay.

So much fun at the beach,
I love to swim in the ocean.
I jump up and down and splash around,
I make such a commotion!

5 Little seashells:

5 little seashells on the shore.
A wave swept one away,
Now there are 4.

4 little seashells by the sea.
The tide came up,
Now there are 3.

3 little seashells by the water so blue.
A little boy picked one up,
Now there are 2.

2 little seashells having so much fun.
A little girl put one in her bucket.
Now there is 1.

1 little seashell left lying in the sun.
A seagull swooped down,
Now there are none.

Beach Ball:
(sung to the tune of Roll the Ball)
Do the motions with your toddler as they are sung

Beach ball, beach ball
Beach ball, beach ball
I roll the beach ball to ________ (name of your child)
and she/he rolls it back to me.

Beach ball, beach ball
Beach ball, beach ball
I throw the beach ball to ______ (name of your child)
and she/he throws it back to me.

Beach ball, beach ball
Beach ball, beach ball
I kick the beach ball to _______ (name of your child)
and she/he kicks it back to me.

Beach ball, beach ball
Beach ball, beach ball
I hit the beach ball to ______ (name of your child)
and she/he hits it back to me.

Online Fun:

Beach Videos:
Visit for videos all about the beach.

Coloring Pages:
Check out for some printable beach coloring pages.


Beach Cupcakes:

Check out for adorable beach cupcakes, complete with an umbrella, beach chair, and beach ball!

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