Pre-K & Preschool theme ideas for learning about pets
Find more Pet Activities for Pre-K
Click here for a complete list of books about Pets!
Pets Large Motor Games
Obedience School Game
Children pretend to be dogs. As a few dog commands are called out (fetch, sit, lie down, roll over, bark, beg, come, etc.), the children act them out.
Pet Movement Game
The children choose which kind of pet they want to be. They move around and make the sounds of that animal.
Pets Fine Motor Skills Activities
Pet Food Play Dough
Children roll play dough into little balls to make dog food or cat food and place them into a bowl. Rolling play dough is a good fine motor skill.
One year, one of my students also had the idea to roll Model Magic into little balls for pet food and paint the pieces brown. Children used the pretend food in the pet store and in their pretend play with the toy dogs and cats.
Pets Art Activities
Dog House 3-D Art Project
This is another idea from one of my students. Children made dog houses with cardboard boxes. They worked together with others to make the doghouses, deciding how it would look, where the door would be, and what materials to use to decorate the house.
Pet Literacy Activities
This activity incorporates literacy, math, and social skills. Children made pet food, dog houses, pet toys, and leashes to sell in their pet store. A cash register with play money, paper, and pencils were added and the children wrote receipts and price tags for the items.
Pet Store Signs
Children made signs for their pet store.
Pets Bingo Stamping Game
This game works for Literacy or Math. Read about and print the Pets Bingo Game here.
This is an activity that goes with any theme. Choose a book that goes with the theme, and have the children retell the story.
Read the blog post here for details: story retelling
Pets Math Activities
Our graph title was “What is your favorite pet?” In the top of the chart, I placed pet clipart (available in the Printables section). The children chose which pet they would like to have, and placed their name card in the pocket chart graph. We counted how many of each animal, and determined most/least/same.
Dog and Cat Card Game
For each set of cards, half of the cards (index cards) are stamped with dogs and half with cats to represent the numbers 0-4. Children work in pairs, and have an equal amount of cards: one child has cat cards, the other child has dog cards. Players turn over a card simultaneously. The player whose card has the most cats or dogs keeps both cards for that round of the game. When the players tie, they both keep only their own card. Children compare more, less, and same amounts.
Pets Grid Game
Read about about print here: Grid Games
Pet Pattern Block Mats
Read about and print here: Pattern Block Mat Printables. (Go to this page and look for the dog, cat, turtle, & fish mats.)
Pets Social Studies
Police Dog Visit
Schedule a visit from a K-9 police dog and ask the officer to talk about the importance of working dogs.
Pet Care Prop Box
In the house center, we have toy dogs and cats with pet food bowls, rawhide bones, pet carrier, collars, leash, pet bed, pet toys. We keep these in our house center all year.
Nursery rhymes that go well with a Pets Theme:
- Hey Diddle Diddle
- Old Mother Hubbard
Look for printable posters of these rhymes on the Nursery Rhymes Page.
- How Much is That Doggie in the Window: traditional song
- Old Mother Hubbard: Rhymin’ to the Beat Vol. 2 CD by Jack Hartmann
- Rags: Rhymin’ to the Beat Vol. 2 CD by Jack Hartmann