Most children are exposed to nursery rhymes in preschool and even earlier. Nursery rhymes are a wonderful tool for teaching your child how to develop reading, listening, and verbal skills. There are several nursery rhyme activities you can play with your students. Here are a few helpful nursery rhyme activities you can use in your classroom:
Preschool children love to color because it helps them express emotions and learn motors skills. Mother Goose coloring pages can be found on the Internet. You can have a table station ready for the children to draw their favorite nursery rhymes. Another fun activity you can do is to cut out different characters from Mother Goose stories and have the children decorate the characters. Use some glue, glitter, puff paint, and other decorations to decorate the nursery rhyme characters.
A fun craft is to use black construction paper and trace an outline of the child’s hands on the paper. Use scissors to cut out the outline of the hands and weave them together to a spider. Black felt works wonderfully to form a spider. Pull apart cotton balls to make a spider web. Cotton balls can also be used to make sheep from the nursery rhyme “Little Bo-Peep.”
Humpty Dumpty is another great nursery rhyme that you can easily teach to your children. Boil a bunch of eggs and give an egg to each kid. This game works best when you can have the child work with their parents. Make this a large competition by giving everyone a hard-boiled egg and tell them to make a parachute to protect it from a fall. Use different packing material to secure the egg and take them all to the top of a building or high structure and drop them over the edge. The egg that doesn’t break when it falls will be the winner. You should have the children recite the nursery rhyme aloud as you are dropping the different eggs off the roof.
Create a nursery rhyme box that can hold all the different nursery rhymes you will be teaching the children:
For Jack and Jill, use a small pail, a cardboard hill, a picture of a well, and a picture of Jack and Jill. You can use a flannel board if you prefer and place the pictures on the board as you read the nursery rhyme.
Hey Diddle Diddle can be read with some fun props like a plastic spoon and plate, a toy cow, dog, cat, a picture of the moon on cardstock. Again, you can use a flannel board or you can show the props to children as you read the nursery rhyme.
Having children act out the nursery rhyme is a fun way for children to learn the nursery rhyme. Provide the kids with masks, puppets, and stick puppets. Finger puppets are a great thing to have when you read the nursery rhyme so you can act out the rhyme to the children with your finger puppets.
Another fun nursery rhyme craft is to make a matching game. Pick two characters from each nursery rhyme that coordinate together and place them on cardstock and laminate them. For example, you can have a card with a cow jumping over the moon and another card with a dish and a spoon to represent Hey Diddle Diddle.
Even ordinary nursery rhyme characters can be transformed into unique characters that can be used over and over again. Nursery rhymes are wonderful ways to help children develop needed skills for the future. Allow children to use their imaginations as they help you create different characters for the nursery rhyme reading sessions.