Explore visual sequencing and capacity with these two mitten activities. Reading The Mitten by Jan Brett seems to be a right of passage in the early childhood classroom, and students love hearing about all the animals Nicki meets throughout the story. This book is a treasure trove for preschool teachers with gorgeous illustrations and unique side pictures!
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Visual Sequencing During a Read Aloud
Reading aloud to young children is a fine art. Teachers can plan things before, during, and after reading to keep the students engaged and thinking. For the first of the two mitten activities, use the free picture cards included in the file below for each of the eight animals to practice sequencing. Which animal did she see first? What came next? This activity enhances comprehension, builds vocabulary, and introduces students to the concept of sequencing.
After reading the story, use the book to explore capacity. Capacity is simply the amount a container can hold. Discuss capacity in the context of things around the room – how many toys do you think the toy box will hold? How many bottles of water would it take to fill up a vase? Introducing new concepts by connecting them to personal items is a great way to build understanding.
Next, count how many animals fit into Nicki’s white mitten on the paper. Provide each student with a mitten from the dress-up box or have them bring in their mittens. Discuss how many Unifix cubes might fit inside and record their estimates on the worksheet.
Finally, allow the students to fill the mittens with cubes. The students will count each cube once their mittens are full to check their predictions. Writing numbers is still a challenge for many pre-k students, so using a large number line can help. Students learn about capacity in a tactile way, and that mittens can hold a lot of cubes!
More Mitten Activities (and more) for a Cold Day
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