Snowman Bowling Daycare Activity: Winter Gross Motor Preschool Activity

by Carla on December 23, 2009

Motor skills are actions that control how muscles move the body. Gross motor skills are those that control the large muscles of the body which are used to walk, run, crawl, sit, jump, and other large muscle activities. Preschool teachers and daycare providers can enhance gross motor skill development through effective lesson plans that include gross motor activities.

Activities for preschool children should include those that develop physical gross motor skills. Snowman bowling is an activity that will promote major muscle coordination and it’s just plain fun for preschool aged kids.

According to the Encyclopedia of Children’s Health, gross motor skills are the abilities required in order to control the large muscles of the body. Some important physical gross motor concepts and skills that preschool age children learn to master are balance, spatial orientation (which means that the child is aware of the position of his or her body in space as well as in relation to other people and objects), laterality (which means that the child is aware of the left and right sides of the body), and the coordination of major muscles.

Daycare centers can encourage gross motor skill development through effective lesson plans and play. A fine example of an activity that promotes the development of gross motor skills is snowman bowling.

This lesson plan includes not only the preparation instructions, procedure, and materials list for this activity, but also the age appropriate learning objectives and a sample of the simple supporting verbal cues necessary to encourage participation and support learning.

Snowman Bowling Materials List

  • 10 Snowman Template
  • 10 empty 2-liter soda bottles (plastic)
  • Rubber or plastic balls for bowling

Activity Preparation

Cut out the snowman templates and tape each one to a 2 liter soda bottle. Arrange the pins in a bowling formation. Set balls near the bowling station.

Procedures for Snowman Bowling Activity

Invite the children over to the snowman bowling area. Explain to the children that you are going to roll the balls toward a target. Model to the children how to roll the balls toward the snowmen to knock them down. Children can also kick the ball to knock down the snowmen. Let take turns bowling.

Gross Motor Learning Objectives

Objective 1: To provide the opportunity for projectile management through rolling balls toward the snowman targets.

  • Verbal Cue A: Let’s play snowman bowling.
  • Verbal Cue B: Can you roll the ball toward the snowmen?

Objective 2: To develop spatial relationships (body and space perception) using the prepositions inside, outside, forward, and straight ahead in verbal cues.

  • Verbal Cue A: Roll the ball straight ahead and toward the snowman?
  • Verbal Cue B: Can you roll the ball forward?

Objective 3: To provide the opportunity for projectile management by kicking the ball toward the snowman targets.

  • Verbal Cue A: Can you kick the ball toward the snowmen?
  • Verbal Cue B: Let’s kick the ball straight ahead and knock the snowmen down.

With this simple and fun activity, preschoolers will enhance their gross motor skills and develop a greater sense of spatial relationships. Please keep in mind that this is not a competitive activity, so do not keep score or enforce rules that promote competition.

About Carla

Carla Snuggs has written 88 post in this blog.

Carla is a freelance writer from Southern California. She has a B.A. in early childhood education and a Master of Library and Information Science degree specializing in public librarianship and youth services.

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