Transportation Theme and Activities

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The possibilities for a transportation theme are endless. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Transportation Songs and Fingerplays

Twinkle twinkle traffic light
Twinkle, twinkle traffic light
Round the corner shining bright.
Red means stop, green means go,
And yellow means go very slow.
Twinkle, twinkle traffic light
Round the corner shining bright.

Wheels on the Bus
The wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round, round and round
The wheels on the bus go round and round, all through the town. (roll hands)

Other verses:
The wipers on the bus go swish swish swish
The door on the bus go open and shut
The seats on the bus go bump bump bump

Riding in a train I go,
Rocking, rocking, to and fro,
Side to side and to and fro,
Riding in a train I go.

In an airplane I fly,
Up, up, up, into the sky,
Up, up, up, so very high,
In an airplane I fly.

Riding on my bike today,
Pedal, pedal, all the way,
Pedal fast and pedal slow,
Riding on my bike I go.

Transportation Art Activities

Tire Track Painting
Provide children with large sheets of paper and fill pie tins or shallow containers with paint. Show the children how to use small toy cars and trucks for painting tracks by dipping the wheels in the paint and then rolling on the paper.

Train Wheel Spools
Have children draw or create a train using construction paper. Dip the ends of spools in paint and stamp on paper for wheels of the train.

Fingerpaint Traffic Signs
Give each child a piece of fingerpaint paper. Cut strips of masking tape and stick the tape to the paper to spell out the word "STOP". Have students paint their papers with red fingerpaint, covering the masking tape. When the paint is dry you can carefully peel the tape off to reveal the word "STOP". Cut the paper into a stop sign shape. The same idea could be used to make "YIELD" and other traffic signs.

Transportation Math and Science

Transportation Vehicle Sorting
Provide a large assortment of transportation, trucks, boats, planes, etc. Allow children to sort by the different attributes. Some ideas are to sort by: Land, Sky and Water vehicles; Items with wheels and without wheels; and Items with wings and without wings.

Transportation Graph
Create a graph of how children have car, by boat, by plane, by bus, etc.

Parking Lot Math
Using Masking tape, make a parking lot on the floor, with spaces big enough for toy cars. In each parking space, put a simple math addition problem. Tape a number (the answer to a math problem) to each toy car and have children park the cars in the correct parking spaces, based on the answer to the addition problem.

Pool Noodle Racetrack
Cut a giant pool noodle down the middle and set up a racetrack ramp. If the noodle is big enough for toy cars, have children race the cars down the noodle ramp. If it is a smaller pool noodle, use marbles instead.

Make ramps of two different heights, using blocks from the block area, to roll matchbox cars down. Talk to children about which one goes faster, the tall ramp or the short ramp, and why.

Transportation Motor Skills and Movement

Human Choo-Choo
Show the children how line up and form a train by holding onto each other's shoulders. Teach them the following chant as the move around the room:

Here's a little choo-choo train,
Chugging down the track.
Now it goes forward.
Now it goes back.
Now the whistle blows.
Whooooo, Whooooooo!
What a lot of noise it makes,
Everywhere it goes
The train comes running back.

Red Light, Green Light
Play the classic game of Red Light, Green Light.

Transportation Snacks

Apple Sailboats
Have the children make apple sailboats from an apple slice, a triangular piece of cheese, and a pretzel stick.

Cracker Wheels
Help the children use a squeezable spread to decorate crackers with spokes.

Traffic Light Graham Cracker Snacks
Spread a rectangular piece of graham cracker with chocolate frosting or Nutella. Place a red, yellow, and green M&M on top of each graham cracker so that it looks like a traffic light.

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