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Language & Literacy



Songs, Poems, & Fingerplays:






Math & Number Concepts






Dramatic Play




Music & Movement


Science & Discovery


Blocks & Building



Puzzles, Games & Manipulatives












Bulletin Boards


Other Resources

This is always a favorite theme for preschoolers.  It is a fun way to look at all the different ways we get around.

Songs/Poems/Finger Plays:

Row Row Row Your Boat

Row Row Row Your Boat

Gently down the stream,

Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily gently down the stream.

(have the kids help you make up more verses like drive, drive, drive your car, slowly down the road...)

The Wheels On The Bus, and then change the verse to the Engines On The Planes Go Vroom Vroom Vroom, The Oar On The Boat Go Back And Forth,  The Horn On The Car Goes Beep Beep Beep, (make up a bunch more....) All The Way To Town!

Train Welcome song:
Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, up the railroad tracks,
Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, then we come right back.
First we go to (child's name) house, and then we go to (child's name), (repeat for all the children)
Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, up the railroad tracks,
Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, Choo-Choo-Choo-Choo, then we come right back.

Story Time:

Tonka Look Inside Trucks by Patricia Relf

 The Little Engine That Could 

To find many of these great books and more type the theme in the search box at.


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Language Activities:


Art Activities:

Car & Truck Wheel Painting!
Supplies: Large sheets of white paper, old play cars and trucks, various colors of paint, some flat paper plates to put paint on..
Directions: Place a blob of paint on each paper plate, let the kids drive their cars through the paint blob then make painted tracks all over their piece of white paper!  Any designs they want!

Traffic Light Pictures
Supplies: Black, green, yellow, and red construction paper, glue, scissors.  Long pieces of black for the stop light.  Circles drawn on the colored pieces for the actual lights.
Directions: Let the kids cut out the circles and glue them in the appropriate place to make a traffic light.  Little ones may need some help with cutting.  Review the colors and what they mean.

Science/Discovery Activities:

Milk Box Boats
Supplies: Small milk cartons, scissors, clay or a bit of play dough, straws, piece white paper cut in a rectangle to be the sail.
Directions: Cut the milk cartons in half using the bottom part for a boat.  Cut two slits in the sail so the kids can slide a straw onto it.  Then let them squish a chunk of clay or play dough in the bottom of the boat to stick their straw (mast) in.  The clay/play dough should hold it up.  Let the kids float them in the water table and use another straw to blow wind on the sail.... they can have races too.

Sensory Activities:

Trucks & Cars in Sand:  Add sand and some cars and trucks to the discovery table.  Small street signs would be great too!

Concept Activities:

Color Wheels
Supplies:  Paper plates (using a black marker draw divider lines through the plates to make eight "slices" on each plate), arrow cut from tag board or other stiff paper, a metal fastener, markers, paints, crayons, etc.
Directions: Have the kids color or mark a different color in each section of the plate so they have one with red, one with orange, etc. let older kids write the color word on each section, for younger ones write it in for them.  (you could also do something a little different in each one, such as in one glue on red tissue paper, in another stick on orange dot stickers, on the next one marker it in with yellow, etc.)   Kids can then turn the arrow and tell the color it is on!

Large Motor Activities:

Play Red Light Green Light (Outside) Kids all line up and you call out Green light and they get to run toward you, Red light means they have to Stop!  I like to through in Yellow light and they have to move very slowly!  (Make up little signs to take out side and use too!)

Small Motor Activities:

Build a vehicle with Legos!

Car & Truck Lacing Cards:  Create some lacing cards using tag board.  Cut a car or truck shape or find a picture to use and mount it to the tag board.  Laminate and punch holes around with a paper punch.  Add a long piece of string or yarn for lacing.

Cooking Activities:

Wagon Wheel Pasta:  Cook some wheel shaped pasta and let the children mix butter in it for a yummy nutritious snack.


Make a banana boat snack!  Cut bananas in half the long way and cover with PNB, add some chocolate chips for people and some mini sales out of tooth picks and cupcake liners cut to form sails.

Make a traffic light snack!  Using a graham cracker broke into a fourth, and gumdrops!  Let kids spread on PNB and then add three gum drops a red, yellow, and a green one.

Center Additions:

Creative Art-  Have out empty check book boxes, toilet tubes, paper fasteners, scraps of paper and other stuff, glue, let the kids create their very own one of a kind automobile, plane, space ship, what ever they want!

Math & Manipulative-  You need a "KEY" to drive just about anything!  A bunch of keys for sorting, counting, ordering by size, etc. would be great.

Housekeeping-  Get out those Little Tike Cars and Trucks, or better yet through a few big boxes in the room for pretend cars, airplanes, boats, what ever!

Story & Language-  Any books about Transportation!

Blocks & Buildings-  Add some matchbox cars or hot wheels type cars to the blocks!  Watch the kids start to build garages, car washes, and other fun things!  Wooden street signs are a great addition to the block area for this theme. 

Infant/Toddler Extras:

Big sturdy cars and trucks are always fun to push around and make car sounds.

Fisher Price makes some new big dump trucks and such, or how about the Little Tikes Fire Engineer!  A train track that doesn't have small pieces (again Fisher Price has one) would be fun just make a very simple round track!

Board books and picture books of automobiles, planes, and boats would be great!



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