What you need:
Different size pinecones
There are many great opportunities to play, craft, and explore with pinecones in your classroom.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
Arts and Crafts
Provide children with paint, glitter, and paintbrushes and let them paint the pinecones. Use them in your small world play areas as trees.
Provide children with paint, glitter, play dough, feathers, craft sticks, and wiggly eyes and let them create their own play dough creatures.
Cotton Balls Pinecone Owl
Provide children with cotton balls. Let children tear the cotton balls into small pieces and stick the cotton balls inside the pinecones. Last, glue wiggly eyes and wings to the pine cone.
Children can count, sort, sequence, or create patterns with natural pinecones or ones that have been painted.
Language Arts Activities
Add small sticker letters on the scales of several pinecones. Give each child a list of letters to search for. You can use their names, sight words, or the whole alphabet.
Provide children with a fresh picked pinecone, magnifying glasses, and tweezers. Encourage children to take the pinecones apart just like a squirrel would do.
Gross Motor Skills
Pinecones Target Practice
Tape a line and place 10 pinecones behind the line. Place some different size containers a few feet away off the line. Let children try to toss the pinecones inside the containers. How many pinecones landed in the containers?
Squirrel Pinecones Target Practice
Print out Squirrels from our 5 Little Squirrels Felt Story. Tape a line and place 10 pinecones behind the line. Tape the squirrels on the floor. Let children try to roll the pinecones to the squirrels. How many squirrels got a pinecone?
Squirrel Gathering Pinecones
Let children pretend to be squirrels gathering pinecones to their tree. Place a hula hoop on the floor to mark the squirrels' home.
Encourage children to
roll the pinecone with their hands.
roll the pinecone with their feet.
carry the pinecone on the top of their hand.
carry the pinecone on top of their head.
squeeze the pinecone between their legs and hop.
Fine Motor Skills
Provide children with small pom-poms or cotton balls. Let children stick the pom-poms or cotton balls inside the pinecones.
Your child engineers will be intrigued with a pinecone building challenge. Give them a number of pinecones to count out and stack. Start small and increase the number each time they are successful.