Keep reading for some fun preschool activities based on Strictly No Elephants. These activities are part of our Storytime Club, which includes 10 weeks of book-inspired activities. To learn more about our Storytime Club, click here!
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STRICTLY NO ELEPHANTS ACTIVITIES
As a preschool parent or teacher, I know one of your biggest goals is to teach your little ones to be kind, inclusive, and a good friend. Because that’s my goal, too! Strictly No Elephants is the PERFECT book to help teach these important social skills with your littles ones, either at home or in your classroom.
In this story, a little boy never fits in because he has a tiny elephant for a pet. On Pet Club Day, he’s excluded from the fun because the sign on the door says, “Strictly No Elephants.” The boy and his tiny elephant end up starting their own club, where they include kids with EVERY kind of pet imaginable!
This book always makes me tear up. There’s not a person alive who hasn’t felt sad, left out, or excluded, so we can all relate to the little boy in this story. But he chooses kindness and braves the scary things (with the help of his tiny elephant), which is exactly what we all should do, too!
Check out all of these fun Strictly No Elephants activities that can help bring this story to life for your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten littles!
LITERACY: RHYMES WITH TREE
Developing phonemic awareness is the first step toward becoming an independent reader. Understanding how to manipulate sounds in words they hear helps our little ones connect those sounds to the letters on the page. One of the best ways to develop phonemic awareness is to work on rhyming.
For this activity, students will be working to identify words that rhyme with “tree.” I’ve included 24 cards (12 that rhyme and 12 that don’t) for them to sort. This activity doesn’t require little ones to be able to read yet, but I did include the words in case students are ready to begin decoding.
MATH: ONE LESS, ONE MORE
Have you ever asked a little one to count starting up from 7? What about 13? Do they have to start at 1, or can they start from any number and count on? Being able to count up (or down!) from any number is an important math foundational skill for our little ones.
In this activity, students will choose a number and put it in the middle of their mat. Then they will find one less and one more, and put those numbers on their mat. I’ve also included a number line in case you want to introduce this helpful tool to your little ones who are ready for it.
FINE MOTOR: ANIMAL ILLUSTRATIONS VS. ANIMAL PHOTOGRAPHS
Cutting with scissors is much more complex than just giving our little ones scissors and expecting them to know what to do! There are milestones associated with cutting, and it takes a combination of fine motor skills and core strength, stability, & balance to be able to do it correctly.
For this activity, students will be asked to cut out the animal illustrations and animal photographs, giving them more exposure to using scissors. Then they will sort the pictures onto the correct mat. (They can also match the photograph and illustrations together as another option.)
GROSS MOTOR: ANIMAL MOVEMENT CUBE
By far, the most popular freebie on my website is my Move Like an Animal Cube, and I can see why…kids LOVE to get up and move! So knowing how popular that freebie is, I decided to create another movement cube to go along with Strictly No Elephants.
For this activity, you’ll make an Animal Movement Cube that asks little ones to do different actions with their exotic pets…like throwing the ball to their elephants, climbing up their giraffes, or skipping with their skunks! These animals are all from Strictly No Elephants and go along perfectly with the book.
CRAFT: ALL ARE WELCOME SIGN
The moral of Strictly No Elephants is “All Are Welcome.” At the end of the story, the kids who formed the new pet club make an “All Are Welcome” sign, and they even include the girl who excluded them. Talk about being kind!
For this activity, students will make their own “All Are Welcome” sign. I included a printable for them to color, or they can create their own. Up to them! These are wonderful to hang up around the room to remind everyone of the importance of kindness and inclusivity.
SNACK: FRIENDSHIP BITES
This might be my favorite Strictly No Elephants activity from this pack! For the snack this week, students will be making “Friendship Bites,” which are just like energy bites…only instead of giving you energy, they make you a good friend!
I’ve included the recipe so little ones can help you make them, and each ingredient stands for a different trait of being a good friend. Mix all the ingredients up & eat your snack to become a good friend to everyone around you!
YOU TUBE: KINDNESS BY THE JUICEBOX JUKEBOX
Since this pack is all about kindness, I included a link to a great Kindness Song over on You Tube!
READING RESPONSE: JOURNAL WRITING PAGE
Teaching our little ones to reflect on what they’ve read is a skill we want to start from the beginning. These journal writing pages allow them to draw and write a response to this story.
STRICTLY NO ELEPHANTS PACK
All of the activities in this pack can be found in our Strictly No Elephants book printable pack, which can be found in my shop here!
Do you love this story, too?! Do you have any fun activities that would be great for it? Comment below or find me on Instagram [@littleslovelearningblog] and let me know!