Wednesday, January 9, 2013

200 Essential Preschool Activities: A Book Review

About The Book:

Promote children's learning, improve their functional skills, and encourage interaction in your classroom with 200 Essential Preschool Activities. Use these adaptable, open-ended, developmentally appropriate preschool activities and strategies to complement and enhance your early childhood program's core curriculum. You will find ideas for creative centers, learning games, group lessons, arts and crafts, and classroom structure, as well as suggestions to involve families in children's early learning. 
Age focus: 3-5. Softbound, 232 pgs.

About The Author:

Julienne M. Olson teaches early childhood special education for the Rural Cass County Special Education unit. She graduated from Minnesota State University—Moorhead in 1995 with degrees in early childhood special education and intellectual disabilities. Julienne has been teaching early childhood special education at Central Cass Public School in Casselton, North Dakota, for the past 16 years. She works with students between the ages of 3 and 6, and her classroom is focused on children who have disabilities and includes typical peer models. She earned a master's degree in early childhood special education from Minot State University in 2011 and is currently seeking an early childhood regular education endorsement, with plans to finish in 2013. Outside of school, she has a passion for literature and reading, and also enjoys cycling, supporting animal charities, and spending time with her family and friends.

My Review:

Once again, I have the wonderful opportunity to introduce you to a great resource from Red Leaf Press. If you work with preschool children, or parent them, this is a book for you! 

200 Essential Preschool Activities is chalk full of fun, easy to plan/implement activities that will keep children ages three to five busy and learning for hours on end. Seriously, I have had a blast doing many of the activities listed in the book. The book is very well organized, with easy to implement, low-cost, fun activities. 

The book is divided into six chapters, which each chapter then giving several activites to build on the topic. 

Chapter 1: Classroom Structure (#1-10 activities)
Chapter 2: Creative Centers (#11-27 activities) AND Discovery and Sensory Areas (#28-42) 
Chapter 3: Group Lessons (#43-60 Academic Growth; #61-74 Social Skills; #75-92 Hands On Learning Experiences; #93-97 Musical Creativity)
Chapter 4 Arts and Crafts (#98-122 Child Centered Expressive Art; #123-140 Creative Tools and Methods)
Chapter 5: Learning Games (#141-149 Board Games; #150-158 Thinking Games; #159-163 Verbal Games; #164-176 Movement Games)
Chapter 6: Family Involvement (#177-187 Involving Families in the Home Setting; #188-200 Involving Families in the School Setting)

My favorite activies were the Discovery and Sensory Areas, especially  Snow Cookies and Frozen Treasures. My girls especially enjoyed these, as well as Pizza, Pizza, Pizza from the Dramatic Play Areas. I also really appreciated many of the fantastic tips found in Chapter 1, and it really allowed me to re-evaluate my learning space and make a few much needed changes!

Overall, I give this book a huge thumbs up, and recommend to anyone who works with preschool children in any capacity!

BUY IT: You can purchase 200 Essential Preschool Activities online through Red Leaf Press. It is also available in e-book format

***I received a complimentary copy of this book, courtesy of Red Leaf Press, for the purpose of review on this blog. All opinions expressed are my own, and I have not been compensated in any other manner***

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