This lesson on trains is part of a series on transportation for the kindergarten class. The use of a puppet in this lesson will provide a fun approach to teaching.
Reading Circle: How Can I Get There?
You will need a puppet and a bag of toy vehicles, such as a train, helicopter, airplane, car, truck, motorcycle, boat, rocket and horse. Let Tessie, the puppet, introduce herself and tell the children about her problem. Create a scenario as she explains how she loves to travel, but she needs their help to decide how to get there. This interactive activity lets the children take part in the puppet's dilemma, while fostering problem solving, listening and social skills.
Read this timeless story, Two Little Trains by Margaret Wise Brown.
Turn on the music and let the kids become a train. As groups of 4 or 5 children hold on to the waist of the person ahead, they will chug along to appropriate music, such as Johnette Downing's,"Chugg-a-Lugg-a-Choo-Choo" from her Music Time CD.
Math: Number Words and Shapes
From construction paper, cut and laminate separate colorful large shapes into a train engine. A square for the face, black circles for the eyes and nose, triangles for the ears and "chin" and a black tall rectangle for the smoke stack. This activity will be assembled on the chalkboard while reviewing flashcard number words. When answered correctly, allow the child to "build" the engine, one shape at a time. When the train is built, the remaining children remove one shape at a time. Each child says the number word, the color, as well as the shape.
Phonics: All Aboard the Phonics Train
Use a train to learn letter blends, by placing a consonant on the engine and vowels on each car of a train. This display may be used through the year when teaching vowels and consonants. For more on this activity, see the article All Aboard the Phonics Train.
Curious George Takes a Train by Margret and H.A. Rey
The Caboose That Got Loose by Bill Peet
Freight Trains by Donald Crews
Two Little Trains by Margaret Wise Brown