an early education learning space ~ where play equals learning

Game Days


My preschool goal is to have structured lessons 2 days a week and one day for individual work, catch up or school games. Today was our first school games day. I’ve been busy gathering inspiration from many sites on Pinterest and actually making homemade games to use here. Today I brought out a group that would provide a lots of fine motor skills. They really had no cost as I used materials I already had on hand (waiting for me to figure out a way to use them).

Pinta la lluna has a translator button, but the pictures are inspiration enough. Love this wire/balls game, but know my kids well enough that the free form wire wouldn’t last long, so adapt….. I took some sturdy wood blocks, coated floral wire and very small wooden flower pots from my country crafting days. The wire was a perfect fit for the hole in the pots. Any odd beads, buttons, etc would work if hole size fit the wire. I drilled holes the size of the wire in 2 corners of the wood block, shaped the wire and threaded through the pots. Decided to use just the pots because they are different in shape and texture and we use buttons for so many things around here.  Pushed wires securely into the holes and done.   I didn’t glue as the fit was real tight and also leaves me a chance to change out the beads/pots. These are small – just right for little hands and fit nicely on the shelves around the space for storage with easy use.              

For years I have done the hole punched cardboard shapes and yarn for lacing activities, but I wanted something new. There are so many lacing examples, but these two got me thinking about using larger items to string and a thicker lace. My Little Gems used pool noodles and I had odd ends left from other noodle projects. This button sewing board is from Estsy and was again a thicker lace and wood. I have a large number of long rawhide laces, so I went hunting for items to string on them. Found small wooden spools, wooden curtain rings, and those pool noodles, so we were all set. Tie knots on one end of the rawhide laces and it’s time to play.


Last, I challenged C to a shape sorting race. C has all his shapes down and loves to compete – we had fun. Teach Preschool had this idea for taping out shapes on a table top for sorting with shape manipulatives. I don’t have the table top space and love things portable, so I got out a section of old sheet and sewed up a rectangle (almost square) piece this morning. Then I used fabric markers for outlining the 4 primary shapes I’ll be working on this preschool year. I used colored Sharpies for writing in the shape names. My guys are nowhere near reading, but I expose to the written labels for items whenever I can. Then I hit the construction paper scrap box for making the playing pieces from random colors. I cut 12 of each shape, laminated them and we were ready to use. Of course we sorted first, then divide the shapes equally between us and the challenge was on. First to sort all their shapes correctly won. Yes, I won, but C was having enough fun that we played 3 times. He’s looking forward to challenging his school age friends.




Author: countryfun

35+ yrs in the classroom ~ love teaching ~ PLAY! ~ technology in ECE ~ sharing books ~ STEM starts in ECE ~ outdoors ~ being CREATIVE!!


  1. Your shape game turned out wonderful! I love how the children used construction paper shapes and way to go on winning that game! LOL!

  2. Deborah, Thanks for the comment. Thank you for all the ideas you share.

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