Penguin Preschool Theme

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 10:35 PM

With the increase popularity of Club Penguin and the many movies and television shows created for younger audiences featuring these black and white birds, penguins are fun animals to include in a preschool curriculum. Penguins can be found within a number of preschool lesson plans, such as arctic animals, ice, and birds. This article suggests ideas for a theme day (or week) surrounding penguins with preschool songs, books, art ideas and other activities.

Introduce Penguins at Circle Time

Begin a theme on penguins at circle time by asking the children what they know about penguins. Record their answers and use as a starting base for the learning process. Facts to share with a preschool classroom about penguins:

  • are birds, but cannot fly
  • spend 75% of their time in the ocean, looking for food
  • can leap out of ocean and dive in
  • keep warm with a layer of blubber and their fluffy feathers
  • daddy penguin will watch over the egg while mommy gets food (and vice versa)
  • baby penguins are called chicks
  • they waddle and they huddle together for warmth

Preschool Songs about Penguins

Song #1 To the tune of "I'm a Little Teapot"

I'm a little penguin, black and white

Short and wobbly, and adorable sight

I can't fly at all, but I love to swim

So I'll waddle to the water

And dive right in!

Song#2 To the tune of " My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean"

The penguin slides over the ice bank

The penguin dives into the sea

Look at his black and white feathers

That penguin's as cute as can be!


Preschool Penguin Creative Art Ideas

1. Blank paper with pictures of penguins to draw

2.Black and white painting

3. Material to encourage penguin creations:  oval shapes, black and white paper, cotton balls, feathers, etc.

4. Penguin painting. Find plastic penguins to waddle through paint

5. Fingerpainting framed with penguin outlines

6. Creating penguins with clay or playdough

Suggested Preschool Books and Poems on Penguins

With five felt penguins, or other penguins made of material that can be placed onto an easel board, the teacher can use this poem at circle time:

One penguin, with nothing to do, called to a friend and then there were two.

Two penguins swimming in the sea, called to a buddy, then there were three.

Three penguins waddled to the shore, they called to a pal, then there were four.

Four penguins learning how to dive, call to a brother, then there were five!

The following are some suggested preschool books about penguins:

That's Not My Penguin by Fiona Watt (Usborne, 2007)

Tacky the Penguin by Helen Lester (Sandpiper, 2006)

Scholastic First Discovery: Penguins (Scholastic Reference, 2007)

Other Penguin Preschool Activities

There are still other ways to bring penguins into the preschool classroom:

  1. Suggest ahead of time in a parent newsletter that all children wear black and white on the Penguin theme day and allow children to bring in penguins from home, whether stuffies, books or toys
  2. Fill the sensory table with ice or snow and place small arctic animals inside, including penguins.
  3. Create a penguin play that the children contribute to making
  4. Create penguin stories with the children

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