Gross Motor Reading Game – Pizza Delivery

I didn’t know what to call this game because it uses so many skills . The player needs to recognize sizes , sound out words for the street names as well as recognize numbers for the house addresses. Also it incorporates gross motor and balance as they push the car along the streets. Of course I wouldn’t be posting an activity like this without making adaptations easy. The street names could be turned to letters  such as  A Street. B Street etc… and the houses could be colors instead of numbers!  My son who is almost 5 loves this game, we have played with with friends and alone over the past week. The best part is that new street names and house numbers can be added so easily!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a patch of floor, painter’s tape, some construction paper ( I used black, brown , orange and yellow), a glue stick, a marker , white paper and some sicssors. Oh and a toy car , my son wanted one with space to actually put the pizza in it so ours is huge. Use your favorite.
  2. Start by choosing the words you want to make into the street names.  The player will have to find the right address to deliver the pizza and will have to read all the streets they drive on. I chose to do all sm , sn and sp blends but any words will do. For us my son needed to work on sounding out so I chose words he wouldn’t be as apt to read by sight. Write them on white paper.
  3. Glue them on black construction paper and cut out.
  4. Next up make the houses. As you can see my goal is not perfection , it’s fun so as long as my son can tell it’s a house , I am happy. 
  5. Pop some numbers on the houses. Try to make some that are “easy” for your child, ones they will recognize immediately and some that are a challenge.
  6. Time for pizza. If your child is gaga for crafts have them make the pizza while you do the previous steps. We made 6 total – 2 large, 2 medium and 2 small.
  7. Don’t forget the pizzeria – ours is elaborate ;)
  8. Now create the road way with tape on your floor.
  9. Place the streets and houses with numbers on the roadway.
  10. Invite your player to come and deliver the pizzas! How to play:   Pretend to call the pizza place asking for any combo of the pizza sizes such as one large and two smalls.  Give them your address ( which of course is determined by the house on the street… so ours was #77 Smoke street ), then as they deliver the pizza they have to read the streets they use to get there.
  11. Keep going until all the pizzas are delivered!
  12. Switch up where each road is and move the houses around for the next round! This was such a hit we played for a long time.

Books About Pizza !

The Princess and the Pizza by Mary Jane and Herb Auch is really a cute re telling of the classic Princess and the Pea. They have modernized it and made it a little more feminist in the process, exactly my kind of book. The text is a little long for toddlers but my son sat through about half before wanting to go back and look at the illustration of the horse on the first page. The message is sweet, saying that a woman doesn’t need a man or marriage to attain her goals! Beware though it will make you crave pizza!

The Little Red Hen (Makes a Pizza) by Philomen Sturges is a great retelling of the classic story. Kids will be able to relate to this hen not getting any help for all her hard work. Luckily her friends realize their mistake and do the dishes after she shares her yummy pizza. Since originally recommending this book it’s made a move from the bookshelf to the dresser pile of books that are in rotation for before nap and bedtime reading. A sure sign it’s kid approved!

Pizza at Sally’s is another great look at a small business owner , and how she does her work everyday and feeds the masses with her yummy pizza! I like how it not only explains how to make pizza but it also looks at the ingredients and how they are grown and processed.  Of course it’s not explained in depth but it is explained enough to start a dialogue with interested preschoolers for further investigation.  My son loves the cat in this book, the same cat is in many of the other books but for some reason he particularly loves it’s presence in this one. It’s inspired me to make the dough from scratch with my son next time we have pizza!  A lovely book!

Pizza Parlor Pretend Play & Craft

My son is all about pretend play and we had so much fun yesterday mixing art and pretend playtime as we played Pizza Parlor. I hope this post shows how low key pretend play can be and still be fun . I know that sometimes pretend play can be hard for some parents to get into but when you play scenarios like this one it’s easy to be a customer and the play helps kids try on different roles, get comfy with social interactions and be in control of things they are normally not.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some paper plates, sticky back foam, crayons and scissors for the pizzas. The extra props like the pizza box came from our local store and the oven was made from a box, a marker , a sheet of construction paper and tape.
  2. Start by cutting or having your child cut the foam into pizza toppings. We made pineapple, peperoni, green peppers and olives.
  3. I made the oven by flipping a box over, cutting one side out and adding some buttons and clock on a sheet of construction paper and taping it on.
  4. First call in the order
  5. Start making some pizza – my son started by throwing the dough.
  6. Add the sauce with crayons.
  7. Add the toppings.
  8. Pop it in the oven!
  9. Into the box and into the delivery car.We played for a long time calling in different types of pizzas. He never made me pay for my orders saying pizza was free every Monday, Tuesday and all weekend.  Now that is my kind of pizza!

Book

Pizza at Sally’s is another great look at a small business owner , and how she does her work everyday and feeds the masses with her yummy pizza! I like how it not only explains how to make pizza but it also looks at the ingredients and how they are grown and processed.  Of course it’s not explained in depth but it is explained enough to start a dialogue with interested preschoolers for further investigation.  My son loves the cat in this book, the same cat is in many of the other books but for some reason he particularly loves it’s presence in this one. It’s inspired me to make the dough from scratch with my son next time we have pizza!  A lovely book!

Letter Pizza Craft

letter recognition crafts for kids
We had frozen Pizza the other night and I kept the cardboard it came on to reuse it for something fun. We’ve made a shape pizza already so today we decided on a letter pizza. Good move. We had fun and this activity is so easy to adapt for any skill you are focusing on. Numbers, letters , even sight words could work!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a round piece of cardboard ( paper will work fine!), some red, green and beige construction paper, scissors, glue , paint, a paint brush and a marker. Oh and a paper punch for the circles if you are as bad at cutting circles as I am.
  2. Start by cutting out 26 small red paper pepperoni slices.
  3. Write the alphabet on them. If your child is able to have them write the letters. Set aside.
  4. Invite your little artist to paint the crust, we used orange paint but there is no rule, your pizza can be purple, or green or whatever color feels right! Also a quick tip using sponge brushes like the one we are using is a great way of getting only a little paint on things. Perfect for toddlers. However if they are still putting things in their mouth, skip em, they can be bitten off and pose a chocking hazard.
  5. While they are painting, cut out some toppings we did cheese and green peppers even though ours look like little pickles !
  6. Next add the glue
  7. Add your toppings.
  8. Next add more glue, I dotted it around the whole pizza.
  9. Add our letter pepperoni . Take time to ask your child what letter they are putting on, which is their favorite and what happens if they turn it upside down? If they respond well to you asking them keep going, if they want to be left in peace, chill out and let them soak it in themselves.
  10. Let dry.

Books!




” The Princess and The Pizza”by Mary Jane and Herm Auch is really a cute re telling of the classic Princess and the Pea. They have modernized it and made it a little more feminist in the process, exactly my kind of book. The text is a little long for toddlers but my son sat through about half before wanting to go back and look at the illustration of the horse on the first page. The message is sweet, saying that a woman doesn’t need a man or marriage to attain her goals! Beware though it will make you crave pizza!
“Did Dinosaurs Eat Pizza?” by Lenny Hort has nothing to do with pizza after the first page. However it’s a fantastic book about what we don’t know about dinosaurs. A wonderful introduction for our smallest paleontologists about scientific theories. I did try to read this with my 2 year old and it was partially a success. The illustrations by John O’Brien are so well done that for a child who isn’t into the text, they are still entertained. My son was so into the illustrations that I stopped reading the words out loud . He had so many questions about the pictures, and wanted me to see all the fun things he was seeing. The book itself would be great for 4 and up, but if you have a little dinosaur lover I would try it younger , why not?


” The Little Red Hen Makes A Pizza” by Philomen Sturges is a great retelling of the classic story. Kids will be able to relate to this hen not getting any help for all her hard work. Luckily her friends realize their mistake and do the dishes after she shares her yummy pizza. Since originally recommending this book it’s made a move from the bookshelf to the dresser pile of books that are in rotation for before nap and bedtime reading. A sure sign it’s kid approved!

Heart Shaped Pizza !

 

fun valentine's day food for kids

Making pizza is the perfect cooking activity for young kids, it doesn’t require you to be near a hot stove and they are practically a shoe in even for picky eaters. My son has recently started picking everything except meat and cheese off his pizza so I blend carrots and peppers into the sauce, mama always wins ! Also using tortillas makes it easy to shape the crust into a heart.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a pan, oven , tortillas, pizza sauce, pepperoni , mozzarella , kitchen sheers and a heart shaped cookie cutter.
  2. Start by folding your tortilla in half and cutting it into a heart.
  3. Next using the cookie cutter make your heart shaped pepperoni, you could do this with a host of other toppings as well.
  4. Time to gather the kiddos! Mine was a little hungry after nap and decided to taste test the crust.
  5. Spread the sauce on
  6. Add the cheese, I am not sure if he is putting it on or taking it off in this picture. Shred much more than you need if your little chef is a fan of cheese!
  7. Add the pepperoni! My son insisted the hearts were eyes, so we made a mouth too.
  8. Bake- I baked ours at 400* for about 10 minutes, checking on it often.Do you do something special for your kids on Valentine’s Day? Tell us about it!

Shape Pizza Craft

This activity is wonderful for all ages, older children can draw their own toppings and to complete the fun you can make your own pizzas for dinner!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some construction paper, markers, scissors and glue. That’s it!
  2. Draw some shape toppings , with younger children stay simple, with older ones the sky is the limit. Don’t forget one big circle for the crust!
  3. Color the toppings- wait to cut them out, the small pieces are too hard to color for little guys!
  4. Color the crust!
  5. While your child is coloring the crust , cut the toppings out.
  6. Grab your glue and start putting those toppings on.
  7. Remember throughout the activity to talk about shapes, colors and all that other fun stuff. As always if that is interfering with your child’s creativity, chill they are learning by doing we don’t always have to be “teaching” !
Book!



” The Princess and The Pizza” by Mary Jane and Herm Auch is really a cute re telling of the classic Princess and the Pea. They have modernized it and made it a little more feminist in the process, exactly my kind of book. The text is a little long for toddlers but my son sat through about half before wanting to go back and look at the illustration of the horse on the first page. The message is sweet, saying that a woman doesn’t need a man or marriage to attain her goals! Beware though it will make you crave pizza!