Have you ever sat staring at your homeschool preschool activity list and wondered why some had to be so messy? Can't kids be messy enough on their own? Well, homeschool preschool activities don't have to be messy, but they can definitely still be fun!
I've been searching for non-messy activities for my kids because let's be honest, kids aren't exactly clean and adding more mess didn't sound appealing. It actually made me want to hide my head in the sand like an ostrich until the danger was clear. But, I don't have to do that now. I've found some activities that I know my kids will love that are (mostly) mess free.
I thought you'd enjoy them too, so I put them here in this post. I'm also going to be updating this post as time goes on until I get at least 30 mess-free activities. This will give me enough activities to rotate through during the month without them getting bored with something.
Easy Cleanup Homeschool Preschool Activities
Living in an RV we can clean up relatively quick, but that doesn't mean we want to deal with messy activities. Pinterest is a wonderful place to look for ideas too. Sometimes though you have to get creative with the things you have on hand.
So without further ado, here are the top mess-free homeschool preschool activities I've found and loved. Some of them are from other wonderful bloggers, and some we've tried ourselves. They're kid approved in this household so give them a test and see how they work in your household :).
This was the cutest little math setup I've seen in a while. The gist is letting them count the colored balls out and put them over the “ice cream cones” to create their ice cream! Cute, right?
And, if you want to make it better, you can have ice cream after and use it as a treat for doing well. Maybe you could find a small scoop and have them help you count their scoops too!
2 Goldfish Counting Station
Who doesn't love Goldfish? (don't answer that if you don't love them and let's pretend you do ;).)
Using Goldfish as a way of counting is two-fold… you count them first and eat them later! You can break this up into many different counting stations or keep it all one and have them count as high as they're able.
My son enjoyed this one because he realized just how high he could count without help. It seemed to encourage him in the math department, so that's a win-win for me. And, then we laughed over Goldfish snacks.
Related Post: 19 Homeschool Activities You Should Try This Year
3 Musical Pots Kitchen
Now, this might sound extremely horrible, but if you get into it with them it can be a lot of fun. Playing musical kitchen is definitely not a preschool activity that you'd leave for “quiet time”, or for a time you're needing a break. You'll need to be expecting loud noises, calm, cool and collected.
Little ones can get a little spastic and really into banging those pots. But, it's fun and they'll have a blast making music. To make it even more fun you could put some music on the radio and tell them to play along. They'll slowly start picking up beats and tunes and before you know it they'll be tapping right along with the songs.
4 Identification Notebook
An identification notebook can be used for so many things. Nature walks, having them draw things they're seeing, you drawing things and having them tell you what it is. The sky is the limit, and only your limitations can limit of this wonderful tool.
We have a nature study notebook, we have one where I'll draw things and my son will either trace it or tell me what they are, and soon we'll have a notebook where he'll identify sentences. I'm so excited to see his progress and I'm hoping you'll enjoy this one too.
5 Velcro ABC's
For your smaller tykes, you can use velcro letters to help them start learning their ABC's and the sounds.
What we did for our daughter was cut a board 3 foot by 2 foot and put velcro strips across in lines (separated about 2-4 inches apart). Then, above the lines, we wrote the letters of the alphabet. For the velcro letter part, we just printed the letters, cut them out and then laminated them. The lamination helps keep the letters from tearing or just plain getting messed up.
With only 4 cups of cornstarch and 1 cup of coconut oil, you can create the softest and fluffiest sand ever. Not to mention, it cleans up like a breeze. Mommypotamus has a post right here about how she created it and why she uses these ingredients.
Want to make it really fun? Add some food coloring to it for a pop of color (like the photo above)!
You can either play with this at the kitchen table, on the floor or even outside. Just put it in a plastic bin and you can put a lid on it and save it for later.
7 DIY “I SPY” Bottles
For this one, you can take mason jars (pint or smaller work well) and you can fill them with your toys and then fill the rest (or about 3/4 full) with rice. Maybe a little more or less depending on how many items you're going to put in the jar or how big they are.
We did a “Color I Spy” and just put different legos in the jars. We'd let my daughter shake them up and tell us what colors she saw.
Another fun thing you can do is find nature objects to put in the jars and have them spy them.
Puzzles are probably the easiest, mess-free activities for kids. You can find some that are super simple for the littlest ones, and some that can get pretty complex. We're not at the complex age yet, thankfully.
Melissa & Doug have some of the cutest little puzzles you can find on Amazon. Check them out and see if you can find some that your kids might enjoy.
Puzzles are great for rainy days or times when you need a little bit of quiet while you clean or cook. It can keep your kids busy and entertained!
Related Post: Fun Earth Day Activities For Kids
9 Building Blocks
We love building blocks. They're so fun and you can get pretty creative (unless your son wants to Hulk smash your creations). Thankfully, my kid will sit for a couple hours and play with these blocks and their legos.
Blocks and legos are great for imagination and sensory play. I've heard them playing so many different things and it's quite amusing to listen from the peanut gallery. Cowboys and cowgirls, Hulk and Captain America, Moana and Maui… the list could go on.
Set out some blocks or legos and see what your kids come up with. We've also used them for counting and color identification too.
10 Popsicle Stick Exploration
You can pick a big pack of popsicle sticks at WalMart, Dollar General or order them from Amazon. They can provide non-stop imaginative play for your kids. We like building houses or making a farm fence. These popsicle sticks are great for building things like houses or fences without using glue.
The sky is the limit here really. Especially if you are letting them glue the sticks together. They can build whatever they see in their minds and feel really proud of their creations. We try to stay hands off to see what they want to create, but from time to time we do help out because my daughter is young and still learning how to do things.
Do you have any preschool activities that your kids love that are mess free? Share them below in the comments!
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