Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Preschool Themes - Cowboys and Out West Fun!

One of the ways I keep the program fresh is to use varied preschool themes throughout the year. I have received many requests recently for ideas on cowboys and the great West!

How fun this is and you can use this theme to stretch over several days. You can use this to teach gross motor skills, following directions, coordination, fine motor skills for drawing, constructing and so much more.

Circle Time Idea
Start the discussion asking them what they think cowboys do. The replies will guide you in the remaining conversation. Explain their role in watching after cattle, moving them around from one place to another, corralling a cow who might have strayed from the herd.

Next select one of the children to be the cowboy and the others are the cows. The cattle are to line up on one side of the room as the cowboy needs to catch them and put them in the corral. When the cowboy tags one of the children, that child is corralled and stays with the cowboy in the pasture. You can do this giving each child a turn at being the cowboy.

Dramatic Play
Here is an opportunity to "recycle or re-use" large cardboard boxes if you have them (such as appliance boxes). You can paint them or cover them with paper and label them General Store, Bank, Barber shop, etc. Provide dress up clothes such as hats, bandanas, boots or whatever you may have and let the children pretend they are in the Wild West. You will be surprised at what they imagine and play!

Motor Skills
Use popsicle sticks and show the children how to glue them together to make fences for a corral. They can do this at the play table and set up their own little corral. I use these with the blocks and ask the children to make buildings and put the fences around them. If you have access to small plastic animals such as cows and horses use those as well but be sure they are not too small to create a choking hazard.

Provide biscuits (or rolls) and tell them that this was often what the cowboys and cowgirls had to eat on the trail.

Your preschoolers will get a chance to try their abilities to run, gallop, skip and jump like horses or cattle or cowboys. You can use the opportunity to teach directions such as "in front of", "next to", under, over, etc.

Painting, creating signs, thinking about what stores a town needs, all provide so many chances to stimulate and teach.

I hope you had fun with thess preschool themes. Check out the other ideas in the Preschool Planner for more interactive fun teaching ideas for your preschool.


There are Two Editions now for the Preschool Planner: Basic or Platinum.

Send me any ideas you would like to share and I will post them on my Blog.


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