This year, I finally got rid of doing the traditional calendar at circle time. It’s not a great use of instructional time, and instead, we are using a linear calendar to count how many school days we’ve had in a month, how many days until a special celebration, and talk about things like days of the week, months, etc…. in more meaningful lessons. Taking the huge calendar down left a big spot on our wall,so the pocket chart I used to use once a week has a permanent home on the wall on the space that the calendar left. Now I have a spot for daily pocket chart activities for free choice!
Pocket Chart Activites for PreK
Pocket charts can be used in a preschool classroom in many ways, as a group activity or as an independent or partner activity during free choice. I use my pocket chart for both. Pay close attention to your students and explore how they use this classroom tool best and build on that!
STEM Pocket Chart Activities for PreK
Animal classifying is an easy and popular STEM pocket chart activity in my class. I use these animal habitat cards I made and switch up the habitats from time to time. I like challenging my students and offering some animals that they will need to really think critically about. I usually do this as a free choice activity and encourage my students to work in pairs, but you could do this as a whole group activity, too.
What is your favorite kind of weather? Asking for opinions is a great way to use a pocket chart, not just for science.
Nature sorting. This was a whole group activity. We went on a leaf hunt and then graphed our results!
Shape sorting at the pocket chart. Another free choice sorting activity. I try to include photos of favorite or relevant things for this activity. I’ll be doing a Christmas-themed one soon with circle wreaths and ornaments, triangle trees, and square presents. This is just an example of how to add a little novelty.
Pocket Chart Letter Activities
Counting and graphing the letters in students’ names is so simple but very effective!
I also love this one. Do you have a __ in your name? I am far from fancy, and I just use a post-it to switch up the letters we are working on. What I love about this is that I can not only switch this from time to time, I can change the letter to meet specific student’s needs!
Matching upper and lowercase letters at the pocket chart – I choose a selection of letters pop the uppercase ones in the chart, and invite my students to match the lowercase ones.
Social Emotional Activities for The Pocket Chart
We can’t learn and talk about emotions if we can’t recognize them. Adding some pictures of REAL people and sorting how they feel is a simple way to start discussing emotions. I like doing this during free choice because I like being able to sit with a student or 2 while they sort and talk about emotions while we do.
This activity wasn’t really about turkey. It was a way to spark a discussion about what my students did for Thanksgiving and to help build on our lessons about how every family is unique. Even if we celebrate the same holiday, we may not celebrate it in the same way.