Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Flannel Board Stories and Activity Ideas

Reposted from January 2012 blog article

Last week we posted information on how to make your own flannel board and ways that it can be used. This week we're giving you some ideas on stories and activities to use your flannel board. Enjoy!

Tell A Story

Old McDonald
The flannel board is an exciting way to tell stories. Just think of the Three Little Pigs as a flannel board story. Depending on the age of the child they would not only enjoy participating by putting each pig onto the board but also creating the characters themselves. Children's classics like The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Itsy Bitsy Spider and The Gingerbread Man are stories that lend themselves to interactive telling with a flannel board. These allow children to not only tell the story but practice critical thinking skills. "What's next?" will encourage them to sequence events or to rearrange events to change the story's outcome.
The pellon material, mentioned in last week's post, is a good base for book based figures, it is easy to trace using a pen or pencil right from the book. Since this is for the family's private use with a book they own there should be no copyright issues. You can color the pellon with crayon, colored pencil or marker. When using a marker make sure you have paper under as the pellon is a porous material.
Children will love making up their own story and creating their own characters. As they develop their story telling you'll see that a few figures can have multiple uses as different characters to form different stories. Their imaginations will take flight with this activity.

Rhymes That Teach 
Here are a few favorites and a couple with a twist that the children will enjoy! You'll see that these emphasize the number five - you can add to or subtract from this to create your own version. Children love to manipulate rhyming words so let them get creative!

Five Green and Speckled Frogs
(Children place log, frogs, pond and bugs on the board. Then let them remove pieces as indicated.)
Five green and speckled frogs
Sat on a a speckled log
Easting some most delicious bugs . . . yum, yum!
One jumped into the pool
Where it was nice and cool
Then there were four green speckled frogs.
Last line is . . .
One green and speckled frog
Sat on a speckled log
Eating some most delicious bugs . . . yum, yum!
He jumped into the pool
Where it was nice and cool
Then there were no green speckled frogs.

Five Little Pumpkins
Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate . . .
The first one said "Oh my it's getting late"
The second one said "There are leaves in the air"
The third one said "But we don't care"
The fourth one said "Let's run and run and run"
The fifth one said "I'm ready for some fun!"
Woooooooooo went the wind . . .
Out went the light . . .
And the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight!

Five Little Turtles
Five little turtles playing in the pond
one turtle swam away
and then there were four.
Four little turtles playing in the pond
one turtle went to look for food
and then there were three.
Three little turtles playing in the pond
one turtle went to take a nap
and then there were two.
Two little turtles playing in the pond
one went to meet a friend
and then there was one.
One little turtle playing in the pond
he decided to go home
and then there were none.
No little turtles playing in the pond.

Five Little Sea Shells
(insert the names into the rhyme - don't forget Mom, Dad and Nanny can have a turn too!)
Five little sea shells sitting in the sand
______ picked on up and put it in his/her hand
Last line . . .
No more sea shells sitting in the sand.

Counting, Colors and More
The flannel board is great fun when exploring all types of concepts. How fun to count not only Frogs, Pumpkins, Turtles and Sea Shells but kites, snowflakes, hearts and more. Objects can be made for any occasion, season or holiday. One of our favorites were counting up scoops on ice cream cones. We had many scoop shapes of different color felt ready to pile on top of our tan triangle cones!

Color identification is more interesting with manipulatives on the flannel board and this favorite rhyme.
                         BROWN BEAR, BROWN BEAR
Brown Bear, Brown Bear what do you see?
I see Red Bird looking at me.
Red Bird, Red Bird what do you see?
I see . . .
(You can add any animal in any color. Then count the animals. And while you're at it make up a little story!)
Using the flannel board for letter recognition and simple words is another idea. Just using the above rhyme you could spell out Bear or Brown or Red or Bird as part of the fun. We would play word games with our flannel board and felt letters. Beginner's Scrabble is a game that works well on the flannel board. 

 We'd love to hear how you use flannel boards! Please comment and share your ideas.

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