Materials: Red paper plates, black seed shape cutouts, glue
Preparation: Set the materials out on a small table
Procedure: Invite children to the table, encourage them to create a letter by gluing the seed cutouts to the plate.
Variation: Make this an activity children can practice a variety of letters with over and over by using a plastic plate and no glue. Try this with a brown paper plate and ants
Read the book The Watermelon Seed by Greg Pizzoli, follow up the activity by asking children to come up with their own story of what they think would happen if they ate a watermelon seed. Write down what they say to create a class book. Some children may want to draw illustrations to go along with the class story.
Materials: plain paper plate, paint (red, yellow, green), black marker or black construction paper to cut and glue (for seeds), scissors, gluesticks, markers
Procedure: Begin by providing information about watermelons through a tasting party or a book about watermelons, if you choose a tasting party try to include a yellow watermelon as well. Place materials on the table and invite children to create a slice of watermelon of their own. Students can choose the materials that appeal to them. They may choose to cut their watermelon into a crescent or wedge, or leave it whole!
Create a picnic lunch collage
Materials: photos of picnic food (magazines, cut out from construction paper, or even shapes cut from construction paper), plain white paper plates, scissors, gluesticks, tissue paper squares
Procedure: Set the materials out on the table, be sure there are enough gluesticks and scissors for each child. Invite children to create a picnic lunch using the materials of their choice.
Create a class picnic blanket
Materials: Large white sheet, fabric markers, stencils, paint shirts
Procedure: Be sure children wear paint shirts when using fabric markers. Explain to students that they will be working together to create a classroom picnic blanket. Set out the markers and invite children to create any design of their choosing on the blanket, encourage them to write their name to really make it special!
Follow-Up: Once the blanket is complete, use for an outdoor or indoor picnic! Place in the dramatic play center for children to use as they wish, encourage them to use it for other purposes as well such as fort building!
Procedure: Place the materials out on a small table, use shallow dishes for the googly eyes, spread the rest of the materials around the table. Show children how to squish the newspaper into a ball, they may wish to secure it with tape. Children can use masking tape to attach three balls of newspaper together to create the body of the ant, and the chenille sticks for the legs and antennae.
**Teacher Tip: When children are using the tape, give them an opportunity to try to use the tape on their own before helping. Peeling the tape and tearing it is great for fine motor development and developing perseverance.
Procedure: Invite children to draw a picture of what they would love to do on a picnic!
Follow-up: Invite children to share their drawing and what they would like to do on a picnic with the group.
Click on the + in each category to view the ideas
Provide materials for a teddy bear picnic! Suggested materials: Picnic blankets, teddy bears, pretend food, plates, and cups.
This adorable picnic area was created by community member Cheryl V.
Set up a Sandwich Shop
Add the Watermelon & Picnic Basket Play Dough Mats to your Play Dough center to encourage both fine motor and math development. (Included in the Picnics, Ants, & Watermelon Pack)
Provide burlap sacks for a sack hop (encourage children to simply hop around in the sacks rather than race, at this age they will be just learning to navigate this idea)! Be sure the space you use is free of potential hazards.
This is a fun week to introduce outdoor toys such as frisbees and jump ropes. Be sure to teach children how to use these materials safely.
Provide tweezers for picking up watermelon seeds and transferring to a container.
Read a book full of facts about ants. Discuss with children how ants can carry 5,000 times their body weight. Provide a basket full of objects that are both heavy and light, include items as light as a ball of paper up to objects that are just a few pounds in weight (perhaps a small watermelon). Have children start with a ball of paper, and then they might try to live some other objects. Encourage them to use descriptive words for the weight of the objects such as: Heavy, Light, Hefty, Substantial, Massive, Lightweight. Invite children to weigh the objects and themselves to compare.
Science & Discovery Activities from the Picnics, Ants, & Watermelon Preschool Activity Pack
Parts of an Ant Labeling
Labeling Parts of a watermelon
Ant Life Cycle
Watermelon Life Cycle
Investigate a Watermelon
Use the Anatomy of Fruit: A Science Investigation as a guide for investigating a watermelon!
Materials: Watermelon, watermelon knife (for teacher use only), magnifying glass, large plate, paper towels, small plates, water for washing the fruit, the book Watermelon by Rhonda Cox, Watermelon Investigation sheets from the Anatomy of Fruit Pack
Preparation: Place the materials where they are accessible by teachers, however leave everything off the table initially. Prepare a safe space for cutting the fruit, be sure the space is clean.
Procedure: Read the book Watermelon by Rhonda Cox. Talk to children about the parts of a watermelon. Ask if anyone has ever investigated a watermelon before (provide a definition for investigate as needed). Tell children they will get a chance to explore a watermelon. Ask them what they think it will be like inside, how will it look? smell? feel? taste? Write their predictions down.
Allow children to explore the outside of the watermelon, encourage them to record their observations. Once everyone has explored the outside of the watermelon, take the watermelon to the cutting area and cut it open. Before cutting into slices, allow children to look at the watermelon cut in half.
Next, cut the watermelon into individual slices for each child. Use the investigation sheets as a guide for exploration. After the investigation, enjoy as a snack while reflecting on the experience.
**Teacher Tip: Have a scale handy to weigh the watermelon if desired. Children may wish to weigh themselves to see if they weigh more or less than the watermelon.
Check your local growing schedule, if appropriate plant watermelon seeds or seedlings. If it's too late in the year for growing, perhaps you can get a seedling or even some leaves to show to children.
Set up an ant farm in the science center for observation.
Open up a watermelon and count the seeds inside.
Bring a few watermelons in different sizes into the classroom. Invite children to weigh the watermelon and compare. They may wish to weigh themselves and compare their weight to the watermelon as well.
Work on simple AB patterns with red and white squares. Cut out squares from red and white paper, challenge children to use an AB pattern to create a picnic blanket on the floor.
Math Activities from the Pre-K Printable Fun Picnics, Ants, & Watermelon Activity Pack
Watermelon Shape Clip Cards
Picnic Color Matching Puzzles
Watermelon Number Matchup
Ants at the Picnic Count and Clip Cards
Picnic Number Puzzles #1-10 & 11-20
Watermelon Counting Mats w/ Frames
Watermelon & Picnic Basket Play Dough Counting Mats