Circus Preschool Theme
Songs, FingerPlays and Group Time Fun
Sally the Seal…
Flannel board poem. You’ll need to make a seal shape and the nine different colored ball shapes used in the poem.
Sally the circus seal can do lots of tricks,
Each time that she does, a different ball color she picks.
Whenever she balances the ball on her head,
She chooses the ball that is the color red.
Sally thinks playing catch is really keen,
So then she uses her ball that is lovely and green.
A seal in the circus loves to try tricks that are new,
For those tricks our Sally saves the ball that is blue.
Sitting on her bench Sally is quite a sight,
Just watch her rolling her ball that’s the color white.
Sally sometimes works with the tall circus clown,
Then she throws him her ball that is the color of brown.
When Sally calls to see if her seal friends can play,
She lets them use her ball that is the color of gray.
When she is just trying to be a silly seal-fellow,
She always bounces the ball that is a bright yellow.
Sally has a best friend whose name is Zurple,
When they throw the ball to each other, they always use purple.
Sally is a clever sort of seal, don’t you think?
And she has a favorite ball, it’s color is pink.
Sally loves performing in the circus ring,
She loves doing her tricks more than ANYTHING!!!!
A Tasteful Experience…
Purchase Jelly Belly jelly beans in the following circus flavors…popcorn, cotton candy, bubble gum and any other flavors you wish. Give them out separately during circle time (give all of the bubble gum out and then see what the kids think that it tastes like).
This little tiger is very wild. (Growl like a tiger)
This little tiger is a loving child. (Pet the second finger)
This little tiger has some big black spots. (With thumb and forefinger of the
right hand, for a circle. Place it over the middle finger for spots)
This little tiger likes to prowl and smell. (Dot the ring finger with the pointer of the right hand)
But his teeth are too small to bite quite well. (Let the little finger prowl all around the lap, smell, smell, smell)
Did you ever see a circus clown
When he goes out to play?
He doesn’t just play like you and me,
He clowns around all day.
He jumps and bends and twists around,
And makes a funny face.
He runs and crawls and hoots and toots,
And laughs in every place.
I love to watch the big parade,
And listen to the band.
And see the people that have come,
from every distant land.
I see the clowns and elephants,
And all the horses too.
And all the marchers on their way,
Just like me and you.
The circus elephants are so big,
They never gallop or dance a jig.
They never trot like the ponies do,
But wal around slowly, to by to.
Sometimes they stand up all in a row,
And flap their ears, or point a toe.
While monkeys chatter and say, “That’s fine”,
The elephants “lunk-a-long” in a line.
Little Color Clown Flannel Board…
Little clown, little clown with a big red nose,
Little clown, little clown, with funny clothes.
Little clown, little clown with a suit of yellow,
Little clown, little clown, a happy fellow.
Little clown, little clown with a blue pointed hat,
Little clown, little clown, short and fat.
Little clown, little clown with a fancy green collar,
Little clown, little clown, wants to be taller.
Little clown, little clown with hair orange and bright,
Little clown, little clown, a jolly good sight.
Little clown, little clown with two purple feet,
Little clown, little clown, a real circus treat!
Talk about how seals and dogs balance balls on their noses. Provide styrofoam balls for the children to try and balance on their noses, head, feet, etc.
Every circus needs a band. Make band instruments. Also use pots and pans for rhythm instruments. Wooden spoons are good drumsticks. Put on a record with a good beat.
bend body and one hand in front, and one behind, hold hands and make a circle. Children will love imitating an elephant.
Draw or mark a circle on the floor, or on the playground. The child keeps the balloon in the air by not stepping out of the circle.The size of the circle is determined by the children’s age and ability.
The Elephant Song…
One elephant went out to play on a tightrope string one day.
He had such enormous fun, He called for another elephant to come.
Two elephants went out to play on a tightrope string one day.
They had such enormous fun, they called for another elephant to come.
Keep singing the song, increasing the number of elephants until each child
has a turn. Then sing the following verse.
(However many) elephants went out to play on a tightrope string one day.
They had such enormous fun, but the tightrope broke and they all fell down!
(You can lay a rope down and have one child during each verse stand on the
line as they sing. The children can pretend to fall on the last verse.)
We Are Clowns Today…
The Farmer in the Dell
We are clowns today,
We are clowns today,
Heigh-ho the derry-oh,
We are clowns today.
Clancy the Clown…
Start out with a flannel board with a nose less Clancy, the clown, saying hello. He asks the children to help him find his “Big Red Round Nose” to get ready for his show. Have all the shapes pieces hiding behind the flannel board. As you put the different shapes on the board the children
will tell you if it is the right shape. Keep putting the wrong shapes on Clancy. The children quickly learn their shapes and colors. Play as long as the children are still interested, until Clancy finally gets the right nose!
A simple but fun game we play is called Circus Clown. You have the children sit in a circle and sing “I am a circus clown my name is ding-a-ling can_______(enter child’s name) come in the middle and do a funny thing. Continue down the circle until every child has a chance. This is really fun
with 3’s and 4’s.You might even want to paint your face and the children’s faces like clowns before you play.
Art Time Fun
Give each child a small box with a piece of yarn on it for pulling and let them decorate their box with crayon, markers, crepe paper…when finished choose a stuffed animal to ride in the float and play music and let the kids pull the boxes around in their own parade.
Animal Cracker Fun…
Glue animal crackers on to cardboard or wood in a parade design or ringed (circle) area and paint with watercolors……not too much water or you’ll have a mushy animal parade! HA. Then spray with a sealer to protect.
Animal Stick Puppets…
How about making animal stick puppets or masks that the children can use in either your puppet theater or dramatic play area. (Don’t forget to include tails to use with the masks….our students LOVE wearing tails!!!!)
Paper Plate Elephant…
Children paint paper plates gray. Then add construction paper ears.& eyes:the BIG wiggly ones look cute. Then cut out a circle from the center of the plate. This is where the children stick their arms through to make the trunk!!
You can make elephant trunks by painting paper towel rolls gray and when dry the children can put them on and pretend to be elephants.
3 tbls. of Crisco
3 tbls. of Cornstarch
Blend well, add coloring
Put in margarine tubs
Draw a triangle cone on a piece of construction paper, then have the children glue on either pom poms or colored cotton balls, or glue on white cotton balls, then take some food coloring and put a few drops onto the cotton balls, then let the children take an eye dropper full of water and drop drops onto the colors and watch them spread.
Circus or Zoo Cage for Animals…
To make a circus cage, you’ll need an empty cereal box. Cut the flaps off the opened end. Then carefully cut out a large rectangle on each side. Tape some straws to the box. Do this on both sides and your cage is complete. Now put your tiger in. Wow! Looks like the circus has come to town!
Use an xacto knife to cut out circus shapes out of plastic food container lids to create stencils. The children can use the stencils to paint images on their paper.
Paint circus tent paper shapes at the easels…or even animal shapes.
Sponge paint animal shapes on circle shaped paper to be the acts in the ring.
Float Or Sink…
Use circus related items such as sawdust, balls, balloons, cotton, and peanuts have the children chart them on a laminated board whether they sink or float.
1.) Walk the tight rope – use balance beams.
2.) Talk about how seals and dogs balance balls on their noses. Provide styrofoam balls for the children to try and balance on their noses,head, feet, etc.
3.)Use blocks, etc., to form a circus ring. Set up a ticket booth outside and benches around the ring.
4.) Dress up props, provide wigs, false noses, ballet costumes, men and women’s clothing, hats, shoes, and a mirror.
Sensory Table Fun…
Fill the sensory table with popcorn kernels and plastic circus animals.
Cut out circus animal pictures and attached them to the wooden blocks using clear contact paper. The kids loved building circus rings with the circus animals.
Snack Time Fun
Jell-O Circus Animals…
4 envelopes unflavored gelatin
3 packages flavored gelatin
4 cups boiling water
In a large bowl combine gelatin and boiling water. Stir until dissolved. Pour into shallow baking pan. Chill until firm. Using cookie cutters, cut out shapes. Decorate with tube frosting.
Give each child crushed ice in a paper cup. Dilute punch syrup slightly. Pour over the ice and enjoy.