Babies Walkers to 2 2s to 3s 3s to 4s

Overview and benefit

This game encourages the children to use their imagination by imitating the behaviour, sounds and movements of a well known animals. This provides an important opportunity to use their creativity rather than copying an instructor. The game also offers the opportunity to use pattern matching skills which are important to development of literacy skills.

Equipment

  • 3 x 10 animal pictures (each week) ideally laminated for protection!
  • A suitable CD from your own collection to use as background music (preferably instrumental so no words to distract)

Link to resources

Training videos

Animal Mix And Match-1 from MAD Academy on Vimeo.

Animal Mix And Match-1 from MAD Academy on Vimeo.

Duration

• Up to six weeks

How it works

Each week select 10 different animals to use. Get 3 pictures of each animal, 1 copy for the wall, 2 copies to give to children. Mix and match so that over the term the animals will be repeated.

What to do in the class

Select 10 animals from below each week.

 

 
  • Dog 
  • Mouse 
  • Horse 
  • Zebra 
  • Giraffe 
  • Elephant 
 
  • Monkey 
  • Frog
  • Cat 
  • Snake 
  • Sheep
  • Butterfly 
 
  • Cow 
  • Spider 
  • Bear 
  • Goat
  • Rabbit 
  • Parrot 
 
  • Duck 
  • Owl 
  • Pig 
  • Camel 
  • Fish 
  • Chicken

 

In advance, stick the 10 different animal pictures on the walls around the room.

Ask the children to come and collect an animal picture. 2 children will have identical pictures. Ask the child to return to the accompanying adult to tell them what animal they have got. The adult then helps the child to identify some characteristics, eg the way it walks, the noise it makes, the type of fur it has etc. After a few moments, instruct the children to run towards the matching picture on the wall. Then after a count of 3 ask everyone to pretend to be the animal. An alternative for children that do not want to make the animal noises, is for them to simply name the animal for the parent, and then tell the parent a fact about the animal (where is lives, how many legs etc), the parent can help the child learn a new fact about each animal before return for a new card. Children return the cards to the instructor who then shuffles and starts all over again.

Adaptation for older/younger children

Use a smaller selection of animals for younger children so that they are a little easier to find. Also stick with the more basic and easily recognisable animals for tiny children, i.e. dog, cat, duck, cow, fish, pig, sheep, elephant and horse.

What to do in a nursery setting

Lay all the cards on the floor children have to find a matching card to the one you give them and return both to the class leader.

 Tips

  • It is important that you have more cards than pictures, so it is easy to change them over during the activity. Have around 10 – 15 pictures on the wall and around 25 cards.
  • Giving the cards to each parent to stick up is much quicker, especially if you have already put the blutak on the back.
  • Keep the wall pictures in a separate packet from the ones you give out and perhaps write a big ‘W’ on the back of the wall ones, in case they get muddled. That way you can be sure each card you give out to the children will also be stuck on the wall.
  • When you get the parents to stick up the cards, tell them to stick them low enough so that the children can see but high enough to keep them out of children’s reach.
  • If children are reluctant for the game to finish, put the cards away on a table or windowsill as you collect them, so that you can show your empty hands to waiting children.
  • This activity can easily be themed to fit in with parties or events. Just find imaged on Google what fit the theme, e.g. Christmas or holiday