Saturday, August 18, 2012

Kindergarten is FIN-tastic!

My 5 year old son and his friends are starting Kindergarten this month!!!  He is a little nervous, so I decided to throw him a Kindergarten is FIN-tastic party based on his current favorite book, Don't Eat the Teacher by Nick Ward.

One of the writers at Toddler Approved is my REAL LIFE friend, not just a virtual one.  Our children are going to be in the very same class this year and we are going to be the class reps together.  We put our brains together to plan a super-fun party for 7 cute soon-to-be kindergarteners!  

Gathering Activity: Name Bracelets

Kindergarten Skills:  Name recognition, patterning, Name spelling, Fine Motor Skills

As the children arrived, they located their names that I had written on these adorable name plates I found here. The children found a bag with letter beads and sea animal beads that they used to make bracelets.  


As they finished their bracelets, they joined in a game of TEACHER SAYS, played just like Simon Says.  We played a noncompetitive version, where no one got out.  

Kindergarten Skills: Listening and Following Directions

Circle Time: Don't Eat the Teacher by Nick Ward 

Kindergarten Skills: Active Listening, Participation in Circle Time, Singing in a Group 

I love the book Don't Eat the Teacher by Nick Ward.  It is the story of a little shark who is nervous about his first day of school.  He has the unfortunate habit of BITING things when he is excited and nervous.  At school, he keeps "accidentally" eating things.  He eats a paintbrush, a story book, and even a friend (who is safe).  At the end, he tries to eat the teacher!  All of his friends yell at him "Don't Eat the Teacher!"  Intermixed in the story are introductions to different parts of the school day.  This is a simple and fun book!  It is VERY SILLY!  Every year that I read this to my Kindergarteners they begged for it to be read over and over and over again.  So much so, that the cover of my book is torn off.  I borrowed a friend's copy for the party. 

After the story, we sang the traditional silly camp song, "Baby Jaws."  

(repeat each line) 
Baby Jaws, doot doot doot do (thumb and index finger open and shut like a mouth)
Mama Jaws, doot doot doot do (Hand opens and shuts)
Papa jaws, doot doot doot do (two hands together open and shut)

Grandpa Jaws, doot doot doot do (fists together to look like toothless mouth)
Giant jaws, doot doot doot do (arms together to make mouth)
Lady swimming, doot doot doot do (swimming motion)
Shark is coming, doot doot doot do (hand on forehead like fin)
Lady Screaming "A-HA" doot do (arms in air)

Shark is leaving, doot doot doot do (hand on forehead)
And That's the story doot doot doot do...ABOUT JAWS! 

Craft:  Shark Teeth Phone Number

Kindergarten Skills: Following Directions, using a glue stick correctly, learning phone number

Materials Needed: Blue paper plate, 3 triangles cut from blue poster board, 2 large googly eyes, 7 white small triangles with one digit of  the child's phone number written on each tooth, stapler, glue stick

1-Staple one blue triangle on top as the shark dorsal fin.  Staple the other two triangles on the side to make pectoral fins.

2-Glue on the googly eyes.

3-Allow the child to arrange the digits to create his phone number.  Glue to the plate in the correct order.  

 Game: Don't Eat The Teacher!

Kindergarten Skills: Taking Turns, Following Directions, Color Identification, Comparing Sizes, Fine Motor Skills

I created a large poster board sized game inspired by the game "Don't Eat Pete."  Using my Cricut, I cut out 9 sea horses: 3 sizes and 3 colors.  

1-The children sat in a circle around the game board. 

2-A goldfish cracker was placed in each square of the grid.  
3-The children took turns leaving the room one at a time.  When out of the room, a seahorse was selected as the "teacher" for that turn.   
4-When the child returned to the room, he ate one goldfish cracker at a time.  If it was not the seahorse selected, the rest of the children all said together, "THAT'S NOT THE TEACHER."  

5-The child continued to the crackers, attempting to find the teacher.  Once they ate the cracker chosen as the teacher, the other children all yelled, "DON'T EAT THE TEACHER!" 

6-Crackers were replaced and another child took a turn. 

This is such a simple game, but the kindergarteners thought it was hilarious! 

Outside Learning Games by Toddler Approved

Kindergarten Skills: Taking Turns, Letter Recognition, Number Recognition, Gross Motor Play 

The children changed into swim suits and headed outside for shark themed learning games that included WATER!!!!  For all of the details of the fun games go to Toddler Approved's post on the party. 


The children enjoyed shark tooth shaped pizza slices, a watermelon shark, and shark cupcakes. 


We created these adorable party favors using Swedish fish and shark gummies, inspired by Celebrations At Home Blog. 

We are participating in the KBN Back to School Bonanza! 


 Check out these other great Back to School Ideas!


Beth (

LOVE the shark learn your phone number! Super duper cute & clever =-)

Growing Book by Book

What a great idea. Your pictures are wonderful. It looks like everyone had a good time.


So many great ideas, and I especially love the learning your phone number game! Thanks for linking up to The Sunday Showcase.

Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas

so many great ideas here. I just read this story with my preschoolers this week and they laughed so much. It is a cute book. Love the shark teeth phone number activity.

I am featuring this one this week's Sunday Showcase thanks for sharing with us.

Deb Chitwood

What a fun idea for the start of kindergarten! I featured your post and shark learn your phone number photo in my shark unit study at

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comments! I love hearing from the readers of my blog. It makes my day! I have recently had a lot of inappropriate spam that has snuck through, so I am turning on the moderation of comments for a short time, to see if it helps. I am so sorry for any inconvience this may cause, but I want to remain a family friendly blog. -Danielle @Mommy and Me Book Club