Math Activities for "Five Little Pumpkin Song" October 11 2015

With Halloween just around the corner, here are some great activities from our book/CD set MathMagic.

Don't forget to download our FREE song  "Five Little Pumpkins!!" 

Line them up. Cut out  paper pumpkins with numerals 1-5 or ordinal numbers. Hand out the pumpkins to five children. Have another child be the pumpkin picker. Sing the song and have the “pumpkin picker” select the correct pumpkin to come to the front of the room. Count the pumpkins to make certain the order is correct before having the pumpkins roll out of sight.

Ordinal numbers. Copy and cut out five pumpkins and print ordinal numbers (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th,5th) on one side and ordinal words (first, second, third, fourth, fifth) on the other. Place the pumpkins out of order on the floor or board. Sing the song (out of order). Ask what is wrong with the song. Have the children help you figure out the correct order and rearrange the pumpkins. As the children become more proficient, use the side of the pumpkins with the ordinal words.

Count the seeds. Bring in a large pumpkin and ask the children what they think might be inside. Talk about the seeds and how many each child will be able to scoop out of the pumpkin. Use the graph at the end of this chapter and write each child’s guess on the board. Cut the pumpkin open. Have each child reach in and scoop out one handful of seeds. Count the seeds. Write the actual amount of seeds on the graph. Compare the estimates with actual amounts.

There are more great math activities in our MathMagic book/CD set. Check it out herei!


Getting Ready for the New School Year July 22 2015

Getting ready for a new school year is both exciting and a bit horrifying. If you have been teaching the same age group for a while, you have a pretty good idea what you will be doing as far as the curriculum is concerned and what to expect, but a lot of how a year goes depends on the academic levels of the children and the behavior issues that may arise.  If you are beginning the year with a new age group it may be exciting to face a new challenge, but is also may be a little scary and somewhat intimidating to be facing the unknown.

If possible, it can be tremendously helpful to have an open house or an hour long "mini class" before the official first day. Some preschool and kindergarten teachers are able to make home visits before the first day of class, but that does take a lot of extra time on the part of the teacher and is often done on the teacher's own time. By informally meeting children and parents ahead of time, everyone will feel more comfortable and at ease on the first day of class. Don't forget that the parents are often almost as nervous as your new students. 

When the children arrive for the first day make sure that each child already has a name tag to wear and a name tag on a cubby or a coat hook. Seeing their name already in place as soon as they arrive makes them feel welcome and valued. Find someone to take a photo of each child and be sure to put these photos up on a bulletin board or wall at some point during the first week…the sooner, the better as this also promotes a sense of belonging.

On the first day, it is helpful to have one or two hands-on activities set up in which the children can participate as soon as they enter the room and after they have on their name tags. After everyone has had a bit of time to look around and get a sense of the room, you might call the children to a "Welcome Circle." Ringing chimes or singing a well-know children's song is an easy way to corral the children to come to the circle. Many teachers will define sitting spaces on the floor with carpet squares, laminated name tags or shapes.

The best way to get children focused on you is to start off with a song to get their attention...and that is where curriculum books and music CDs from Panda Bear Publications are a valuable resource. All of our curriculum products have been classroom-tested to be fun and motivational. The music CDs are filled with fun, upbeat versions of classic and new children's song to enhance learning across the curriculum.  Once you have the children attentive and feeling happy after singing, you will find that it is easy to teach the skills on which you want to focus. By following the suggested activities in our curriculum books, you will find tat planning your daily curriculum is a breeze. All of our products come with a 30 day money back guarantee.

Have a happy, song-filled, and productive new school year!



"Over In the Meadow" activities May 07 2015

Over in the Meadow is a fun children's song found on the Music Mania CD by Stephanie Burton. Activities for this and other great children's songs can be found in the accompanying book Music Mania. 

Here is a sample of some activities from the chapter on "Over in the Meadow" :

Large Group Time Activities:

In the Meadow: Ask the children if anyone knows what a meadow is. If not, explain that it is like a field of grasses that may have trees or water nearby. Has anyone been to a meadow? What type of animals might you find in a meadow? 

Make Up New Verses:Make up new verses for animals that might live in a meadow such as:

Over in the meadow in a hole in the tree

Lived and old mother squirrel and her little squirrels three.

“Gather,” said the mother, “We gather said the three,”

So they gathered lots of nuts by the hole in the tree. 

Make Up Motions: Have the children help to make up motions for the animals in the song.

Act It Out: Choose groups of children to pretend to be the animals in the song and act out the part that is being sung. It is even more fun if you can make headbands or costumes to represent each type of animal.

Number Representation: Create cut outs of the animals and numerals to go with each verse. As you sing each verse put up the correct numeral and have a child match up the correct number of animals to go with it.


Learning with "The Mitten" song February 23 2015

The Mitten is a wonderful folktale that we have put to music. Get your song download (free until 2/28/15) at Here are the lyrics to The Mitten by Stephanie Burton followed by activities:

THE MITTEN song by Stephanie Burton

Song on Wiggle, Giggle and Learn CD (click to learn about the CD or order online)

There was a little mouse that was walking in the snow, She was very, very cold; she had no place to go,

‘Til she saw a mitten and climbed inside, and there she stayed for a very long time.

Then came a bunny that was hopping in the snow, he was very, very cold; he had no place to go,

“Til he saw a mitten and climbed inside, and there the two friends stayed for a very long time.


So snuggle up and cuddle up and wiggle all around,

Make lots of room in the lovely house you’ve found,

It may be just a mitten but it’s a home to you, it's safe and warm inside.


Along came a fox with her friend the bear. They saw the mitten laying there,

They asked if there was any more space, then wiggled and wiggled, ‘til there was a place


Well that poor mitten it was stretched a lot, when along came a chipmunk looking for a spot,

It climbed right up on the big bear’s nose, Which made the bear sneeze (achoo-o-o!)

And the mitten explode!

New Chorus:

They tumbled out and stumbled out and landed in the snow;

The mitten was now gone, they had nowhere to go.

So they said their sweet good-byes and went along their way,

That bright and snowy day.


Act out the story: Prepare a large people-sized "mitten" by covering a table with a white sheet allowing the sides of the sheet to hang down over the edge of the table. If you have a large group you might need to put two tables together and use two sheets. This will be your "mitten." The animals in the song include a mouse, bunny, fox, bear, and chipmunk. The children can decide which animal they would like to be and when that animal is mentioned in the song, they get to move like that animal and go into the "mitten." During the chorus, they can "snuggle" with their friends in the mitten.  When the bear sneezes at the end of the song, the children all scurry out of the "mitten" to someplace else in the room. You can print out clip art pictures of the animals and hand them out to the children so that they remember which animal they chose. They can then either hold the picture or you might want to put it on a headband or a necklace for them to wear.

Count out: Count how many of each animal the class chose for acting out the story. Add all of the animals together to find out how many animals squeezed into the glove all together.

Graph it: Using the clip art pictures that you used for the song, make a line graph of how many of each animal there were when you acted out the song.

Rhyme it: Have fun thinking of all of the words that rhyme with the animals in the song…mouse, bunny, fox, bear, chipmunk (good luck with that last one!)

Fun Phonics: See if anyone in the group has a name that starts with the same letters as the animals in the song: m for mouse, f for fox, b for bunny or bear and ch for chipmunk. 

Language Development: After the children have scurried out of the mitten ask each one where their animal went when it came out of the snow.

Five Little Snowmen Song Math Activities January 13 2015


Singing the song. Using the flannelboard, chalkboard, Velcro® board or the floor, introduce this activity by placing the snowmen and numerals on the board. Without counting aloud, ask the children to estimate how many snowmen they think there are. Count them aloud with the students and then choose a child to find the correct corresponding numeral. Place the numeral on the board under the corresponding snowman. As you sing the song, remove each snowman as the song instructs. At the end add the four snowmen to the one left standing so that, once again, there are five snowmen.

Matching snowmen. Copy and cut out several snowmen that match the five you put all the board in the previous activity. Pass out one snowman to each child. Place one of the five snowmen up on the board. Ask the children to see if they have a matching snowman. If they have a match, invite them to place it next to yours.  Remove these and put up a different snowman. Repeat the activity so that each child has had a chance to match one of the five.


Musical Hats. Work on one-to-one correspondence with children by playing this game. You will need a CD player or tape player, music and one hat for each child. It is best if each hat can be different.

Place all the hats in a pile in the middle of the room. When the music plays, the children parade around the room. When the music stops each child puts on a hat. Look around the room and see if each child has a hat. If there is still a hat on the ground, the children find who does not have one and make sure he/she gets one. Before the music starts again, the children toss the hats into the center. The next time the music stops they each need to pick out a hat that they have not worn before.

Find more great activities for this song in our MathMagic curriculum book and CD.

Dreidel song activities December 08 2014

Spin Like a Dreidel. If you can get a dreidel, demonstrate to the children how the dreidel spins and then falls. ( Call a local synagogue to get a dreidel or order one online.) Play the "Dreidel Song." The children spin around like a dreidel while the music plays. When you pause the music the children plop down on the floor similar to the way that a dreidel falls. When the music restarts, they get up and start spinning again. The children will want to do it over and over!

What is the holiday of Chanukah (Hanukkah)? This Jewish holiday falls at at the end of the year, but the date changes according to the lunar calendar. This year it begins on the evening of December 16 and ends on the evening of December 24.  It celebrates the rededication of the synagogue in Jerusalem when the Jewish soldiers, under the command of Judah Macabee, won back the Temple from the Syrians. When they recaptured the Synagogue the Jews found only enough oil to keep the eternal flame burning for a day, but miraculously the oil burned for eight days... long enough to make new oil. It is for this reason that Hanukkah is celebrate for eight days. In Jewish homes, a candle on the menorah is lit for each night of Hanukkah. Gifts are exchanged and families play the dreidel game and eat foods fried in oil. Potato latkes (pancakes) are a favorite Hanukkah food.

Posts July 22 2014

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