Planes, trains, and cars…oh my!
We have entered the wonderful world of transportation this week in our class. All things that go are being explored and created in our classroom. This is always a fun theme because the kids really get into it and make real world connections. Take a look at some of the fun we’ve been having and how we are making it!
Transportation Learning Centers
I recently had a Donors Choose project funded in which our classroom received new STEM materials. Two of those STEM sets are transportation related and made excellent additions to our classroom centers this week.
Our kiddos had the opportunity to build their own vehicle this week in one of the centers. The vehicle building center is great because it gives the kids pictures of different vehicles and the kids then get to use their own ingenuity to create the vehicle.
The kids are really enjoying building their own vehicles! You can get this vehicle building center for your own kiddos on the Lakeshore website.
Transportation Water Play
The second STEM center this week was a boat building water play center. This was also one of the materials that I received from my Donors Choose project.
We used this activity in one of our sensory tables for the week. The kids got to build different boats and rafts. As teachers, we love seeing what happens when the kids get their creative juices flowing. These STEM materials have been great additions to our classroom!
You can find this center also on the Lakeshore website.
Geo Train Art
Our art project this week is more of a STEAM project as we combined engineering, geometry and art. The kids used various shapes to create their own train.
To begin this activity we pre-cut small triangles, small circles, and a few different sizes of rectangles from various colors of construction paper. We also made our own puffy paint ahead of time by combining shaving cream and glue.
The kids started their craft by choosing one large rectangle to be the train car and two wheels and glued them onto a sheet of manilla paper.
After the kids had glued the train car and wheels onto the paper, the next step was for them to add the details to the top of the train. At this point the kids were given free reign to choose what they needed and add it onto their train. This part is where the differentiation of this project came in. Some students needed to have options of only 2 or 3 shapes. Other students needed to be shown different placement for the shapes. However, all students were given the same options and opportunity to create a train.
Once the students had glued all the desired shapes onto their train, the steam was added. We created the steam by using the puffy paint we had made with shaving cream and glue. To put the puffy paint onto the paper, I spooned out some of the mixture and the child used their finger to spread it around.
The end results were lots of unique and special versions of train cars!
It is so interesting to see each child’s take on the same subject. If you try this with your kiddos you are sure to see their imaginations come to life with what they are able to create.
If you have been following our blog for awhile you have seen many of our different sensory bin ideas. Last year we posted about a stoplight sensory bin. This sensory bin is such an easy and fun way to tie our theme into the sensory center that doing it again this year was a no-brainer.
To make this sensory bin we used black beans for the roadway, straw pieces to divide the lanes, red, yellow & green craft pom-poms, toilet paper rolls, and toy cars.
This sensory bin is always a hit with our kiddos! They love driving the cars through the beans, and changing the stoplights for their friends.
That wraps up our transportation activities. We hope you have enjoyed reading this post and are inspired to try some new ideas in your classroom. If you try any of these ideas or have any of your own to share, please leave us a comment. We love hearing from y’all!