One of the best ways to teach children about the various modes of transport is by engaging them in transportation activities for preschoolers and toddlers. These activities can range from singing rhymes to making paper planes and boats and visiting a port.
You will often find boats, airplanes, and cars in a toddler’s toy collection. Ask them about these toys, and they might surprise you by giving you the details of each toy.
To spark their interest further, teach them about the various modes of transportation and complement the theoretical classes with some practical activities given here.
15 Preschool Transportation Activities
Preschool transportation theme activities can be performed through a bunch of transportation crafts. Here are some fun preschool transportation activities (1):
1. Banana boats
Cut the banana in half, lengthwise, to look like a boat. Now tell the children to add toppings to it. Let them fit as many as they can. If they add too many, some toppings may fall off, teaching them how to accommodate anything in the given space. Why not take them to the nearest harbor and show them real boats? They would learn so much from sailing and rowing to kayaking or even canoeing, who knows.
2. Visit a bike repair shop
Here, children will get to see different types of bikes as they are repaired. In addition, they can learn about the tools used to make the bikes work again. Once back home, they can start classes for biking or riding a tricycle.
3. Visit a car junkyard
Recycling is an important subject that children may learn from a young age. Taking kids to a junkyard would help them understand how various dumped parts of a car can be put to some use by recycling them. You could also take them to a train junkyard, where they spend some time playing in a wagon.
4. Train ride
Take a short trip to a subway. Let children buy their tickets independently and learn how to use it during the train ride. This activity may help them gain both exposure and confidence as well.
5. An airport visit
This activity can be a fun opportunity for the little ones to see how huge planes take off and land. In addition, you may also show them the security measures, duty-free shops, the parked planes, and more. Upon returning home, you can check out some online simulators for your little one to practice riding a plane.
6. Visit a train station
For this activity, you would need to carry some colors and papers. Once you reach the station with children, ask them to sit down and draw pictures of things they see. It can be the engine, train, railway track, seats, vending machine or just about anything. Don’t forget to keep a close watch on them to ensure their safety at all times.
7. Building roads
In this simple yet informative activity, children can build roads. Grab color papers in black, grey, blue, brown, and green. Use black paper and cut it in the shape of a long road, green to make trees, and brown to make buildings. Now, it’s time to put it all together and have your very own network of roads.
8. Letter activities
Choose a letter every day and come up with a word related to transportation beginning with this letter. For example, the letter “T” can be used for “Truck” or “Train”. Write this word big and clear and let children learn more about it.
Here is another engaging way to learn about various types of transportation. A teacher shares her experience of organizing an activity that involves both parents and children. She explains, “For this activity, I enlarged lots of different kinds of transportation pictures – skateboards, hot air balloons, blimps, garbage trucks – anything I could find clipart of. I cut red, yellow, and green construction paper 9×12 and folded the pieces in half. I glued the pictures inside the folded paper and put them all in a basket. Then I passed the basket around and each parent/child took one. Then we went around the circle saying the poem. The parent and child would first tell where they would like to go together – then they opened up the paper to show their mode of transportation. Pretty simple – but it gave each child a chance to talk and got parents involved (i).”
9. Transportation books
Make it a routine to read a book that relates to a transportation activity. For example, the book named “Five little monkeys wash the car” by Eileen Chistelow can become your child’s favorite. Another such book would be “Cars and trucks” by David Stewart which has pictures of vehicles drawn in black and white.
10. Transportation tot trays
Make a scenario on a tot tray in connection. Here’s an example: place a number of small boats on the tray and place a container next to it. Now ask the child to keep counting each boat as they pick them up. Tell them to drop it into the container. This activity can also help them with learning numbers.
11. Candy train craft
This activity is filled with sweets and goodies. Collect a lot of candies to build a train. Use the round candies as wheels, chocolate boxes as bogies, and a caramel stick on top of the train. This will give the children a memorable visual experience and help them learn more about train’s parts too.
12. Flotilla cottage
Take a large light blue sheet of paper. Ask children to cut a dark blue paper in the shape of waves and paste it on the sheet. Now take some brown paper and let children make boats out of it and stick them on the waves. This craft activity is not just fun but creative as well.
13. Fire engine craft
Give children a long cardboard box. Ask them to paint it red and paste a ladder on the top (you can make the ladder using white straws). Use black paper to make wheels and draw small orange circles as headlights. Cut out the word FIRE and stick it on the front and back of this vehicle. Your fire brigade is ready.
14. Fruit box mayflower
Take a small brown box or a bucket. Ask children to stick three straws upright in it. Tell them to take a piece of paper and cut out three triangles. Ask them to glue it on the top half of the straw and they would be surprised to see the sailboat that they just made.
15. Airplane craft
Grab a sheet of paper and help your child make planes using them. You may also make many planes in various colors. Now fly your papers planes and see how they land.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why is it important to teach preschoolers about transportation?
Teaching about transportation can be a gateway to introducing preschoolers to vehicular and road safety. It can include crucial subjects such as safe boarding of buses, wearing car seat belts correctly, understanding road signs, and crossing roads properly (2).
2. How do I teach preschoolers about transportation?
Transportation activities are great for teaching transportation-related topics. Other options include visiting a local automobile museum, taking the child on a long drive, going on a train journey, and using toys or small-scale automobile models to explain transportation.
3. What are some educational benefits of transportation activities for preschoolers?
There are several educational benefits of transportation activities, including gaining knowledge about different types of transportation, learning how each mode of transportation works, and understanding road safety. In addition, these activities can spark children’s imagination and lay the foundation for future learning.
4. What role can technology play in transportation activities for preschoolers?
Technology plays a significant role in teaching transportation activities to kids. It helps them learn and understand concepts better. Technology can enhance learning through interactive apps and games, virtual field trips, and online videos or animations. It also provides children with a hands-on experience that can pique their interest. However, ensure that you allocate resources wisely and adhere to the recommended levels of screen time.
5. Which transportation activities encourage gross motor skills in preschoolers?
Transportation activities such as building roads, candy train craft, airplane craft, and fire engine craft are fun activities that can encourage gross motor skills in preschoolers.
Young children are fascinated by different modes of transportation and how they work. So, use this opportunity to introduce interesting transportation activities for preschoolers. These activities will help children develop their motor and analytical skills. They may also help them learn important concepts of cooperation and observation. While brainstorming new ideas, think out of the box and come up with unique concepts, such as taking children to a bike repair shop, building roads with colorful papers, or making a candy train. Also, make sure you grab your child’s attention and make the learning more memorable.
Infographic: Modes Of Transportation
Children love to travel, be it by road, train, or air. Educating your toddlers about the various means of transport is essential for promoting their general knowledge. Here is an infographic that provides the attributes of the primary modes of transport to help teach your preschooler.
- Take your toddler to a bike repair shop or car junkyard as an activity to acquaint them with the various modes of transportation.
- At home, you can simply use a lengthwise cut banana to represent a boat.
- A train ride, an airport visit and many other activities can serve the purpose effectively for preschoolers.
This video is a must-see for anyone looking for creative transportation art, activity and center ideas! Get inspired with several videos in one!
Personal Experience: Source
i. Transportation day!.
- Transportation lesson plan.
- Transportation Safety Education Curriculum.