Welcome to my SnakesLesson Planning Page. On this page you will find fun lesson planning ideas for learning all about these slithering creatures! You will find: links to preschool activities, book recommendations, suggested items to add to your learning spaces, and related Pre-K Printable fun products to compliment your Snakes Theme.
The Pre-K Printable Fun Snakes Activity pack is full of engaging learning activities for preschoolers! Use as file folder games, tot trays, or create your own invitation to play using the printables and your own materials! Here are just a few of the fun activities included in this pack!
Activities by Learning Domain
Cut a spiral out of a paper plate for students to design their own snake!
Paint with tempera paint and yarn, pull the yarn through the paint and squiggle to make a design.
Add snake pattern ribbon and fabric for collages
Add Snake stickers and stencils to the art center this week.
Create a snake necklace with string and pony beads, before creating discuss what pattern their snake is going to have,
Place snake skins in the science area for preschoolers to examine with a magnifying glass
Studying snakes is a great time to talk about patterning with preschoolers! Hang a poster or several pictures of snakes in the classroom, discuss all the different patterns that can be found. Be sure to point out texture along with design and color. Preschoolers may be interested to know that a herpetologist uses a snakes patterns to help determine what snake species a snake is.
Studying snakes often brings up a natural opportunity to talk about measurement! Compare the longest snake species, Reticulated Python (25' 2"), and the shortest snake species, Barbados Threadsnake (3.94"). Stick masking tape to the floor the same lengths as the snakes for children to compare. Invite students to lay next to the tape to see how they measure up! How many classmates does it take to equal one Reticulated Python? Students may be interested in measuring themselves, have extra measuring tape and masking tape on hand to extend this activity!
What is a Snake? Have a group discussion about what makes a snake a snake! Be sure to include facts about reptiles, muscles, hibernation, and eggs.
Encase small plastic snakes in play dough and shape like an egg. Invite students to find out what is inside each play dough egg. Take this opportunity to discuss how some snakes hatch from eggs.
Consider inviting a herpetologist into the classroom to talk about snakes. If you cannot find one, consider finding a short video that discusses what a herpetologist is or read a book about them.
Take a trip to your local library to learn about snakes! In advance notify your librarian and ask them to have some books set aside for this activity. This helps preschoolers to learn that librarians are an important part of our community and are a valuable resource for them! If you can't take a trip out, invite your local librarian to come in and read a few books about snakes.
Talk about any local snake wildlife centers you may have.
Invite animal control to talk about what to do when you see a snake.
Construction Space Ideas
Create a snake aquarium in the block center! Before building have a planning session with students. What materials are needed? How can we find out what materials are needed (be sure to have a reference book on-hand)? This will include an element of symbolic play, students will need to be creative to find materials that will work for bedding, water, climbing structures, lights, etc. Be sure to have a pretend snake on hand to live in the habitat once complete!
Add lots of plastic snakes for preschoolers to create their own habitats with.
Materials to consider adding for building: felt (brown, green blue), bowls, brown construction paper or newspaper, silk scarves (brown, green, blue), battery operated lights (have available for use with close supervision), twigs, rocks
Dramatic Play Ideas
Set up a herpetologist center! Provide measuring tape, magnifying glasses, pretend snakes of all sizes, along with clipboards and pencils.
Using a long piece of paper, cut out a long snake shape. Lay it on the floor in the classroom, invite students to work together to make patterns and designs all over the snake. Hang in the classroom when complete.
The study of snakes provides plenty of opportunities to teach children that information can be found in book. Be sure to have plenty of reference books about snakes in addition to lots of fun stories.
Every great lesson starts with a good book! Here are a few of my favorites for this theme!
Snake Egg Collecting Game: Set up one side of the room with snake nests (you can use a small basket, piece of paper, cloth) and on the opposite side of the room have a small basket of eggs (the eggs can be cut out of white paper or use pretend eggs if you have them on hand). Students start by lying down by their nest, then slithering to the other side of the room to their egg basket. They collect an egg and then slither back to their nest to deposit the egg. Set up about 5 eggs per student or set up as a relay race!
Create snakes from clay. Clay is a different consistency from play dough and gives little hands a big workout.
Set out snake themed puzzles
Place Pre-K Printable Fun Snake Dough Mats in the play dough center (this is a Pre-K Printables Club exclusive product)
Be sure to discuss venomous and non-venomous snakes along with snake safety!
Provide snake pattern ribbon and dish mats from the dollar store for weaving
Jumping over snakes! Provide a jump rope, have a child on each end of the rope. Show preschoolers how to gently squiggle the jump rope so it looks like a snake slithering. Invite the remaining preschoolers to jump over the snake.
Items to Enhance your Space:
Set up a sand and water table (or simply use bins) one side with sand and one side with water. Provide plastic snakes. While children play discuss that some snakes like to spend time in water, some in sand, and some in other types of environments (consider setting up exploration for other environment types as well!). Consider hanging posters of the snakes that like those environments nearby.
Keep a snake reference chart outside for use when a snake is spotted. Keep this available year-round.
Before you start this theme, ask if any parents work with snakes or know someone who does that may like to come in and talk about them.
Ask parents if anyone has snake skins to donate to your science center, or if they can volunteer to ask a pet store or friend for some.
Add the suggested materials and books from this page to your Amazon Wish List for parents to donate to the classroom.
Share your lesson plan with parents so they can extend the conversation and learning at home!