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Happy BirthdayBIRTHDAY ACTIVITY THEME
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There is a Printable Coloring Page of a Birthday Cake available with this theme. Use your BACK button to return to this theme.

 
Happy Birthday to YouHappy Birthday To You  (traditional)
Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday dear (child's name),
Happy birthday to you.

How old are you now?
How old are you now?
How old are you now?
How old are you now?

(birthday child answers, singing alone)
I am _____ years old now.
I am _____ years old now.
I am _____ years old now.
I am _____ years old now. (everyone shouts hooray!)
 

Birthday SongSecond Birthday Song Verse
Sally contributes this counting verse to the well known Happy Birthday Song.

Description: After singing Happy Birthday, we add:

We'll clap for your years.  (twice)
We'll clap and give cheers.  (twice)
We'll clap for your years.
(Clap one time for each year of the child's age as you count aloud.)
One, two, three, four, five, six, - yea, child's name!)
Comments: The children look forward to celebrating their special day and learning the age of their peers.
 

Birthday Song Birthday Month Song
Here's an easy circle time birthday song from Joli B. You'll need to improvise a tune.

Apple, peaches, pears and plums
Tell me when your birthday comes
January, February, March, 
April, May, June,
July, August, September, 
October, November, December. 
Counting: "Graphing Birthdays"
Promote early math skills of graphing and counting as youngster learn the months of the year during this kindergarten and preschool activity plan from Nicole.

Materials: Chart paper & Stickers, stamps, candle cut outs, color or shape coded months of the year - one for each child's birthday month, cut out of a birthday cake or a work sheet with a birthday cake on it and birthday candle cutouts.

Description: 
1.   Ask children if they know when their birthday is and assist those that don't know. Give youngsters cards with their birthday months on them. Then sing Apples, Peaches, Pears and Plums at circle time.

2.  Make a class graph of birthday months and encourage children to read the graph and compare most, least birthdays. Talk about how old they are now and how old they will be on their next birthday.

3.  Ask children to decorate the cake cut-out or work sheet and put the appropriate number of candles on the cake. You can have them number the candles or print the number of candles on the cake.

Comments: The color/ shape coded month of the year helps the younger children 
to participate when singing the song because they don't know the month of their 
birthday or they forget.  Teachers can hold up their color or shape so they know when it is their turn.

Birthday Party Favor: "Card Puzzles"
Jenifer offers this manipulative that can be used to promote youngsters awareness of spatial relationships.

Materials: A variety of cards, scissors, pencil or marker.

Description: You can buy packs of cards at the dollar tree for  very little. 
Selecting the ones you want to use, draw a puzzle pattern on the inside of the 
front cover. Tear or cut off the back, this piece makes good backing for other 
projects so don't throw it away. Cut the puzzle pieces out. The pieces can be many 
different shapes and sizes i.e.; strips, large or small puzzle shapes, squares, etc.
Put them in envelopes to keep and laminate before cutting, if you want to.

Comments: These make great holiday gifts too!

Birthday Cake Birthday Cake Early Math
Maureen J. takes advantage of youngsters interest in birthday cakes and candles to 
promote fine motor skills, counting and grouping sets.

Materials: 30 - 50 birthday cake candles of different colors, clay,
and  pre cut numbers.

Description: Ask the children to tell you how old they are.  Talk about birthdays, cakes and candles. Let them tell stories about their birthdays. Then give the children clay and show them how to roll the clay into balls and flatten them into cake shapes. Next, give the children a variety of candles.  Let them place the candles on  their 
cakes according to colors. Have them tell you the colors of the candles in their cakes.

The children can now remove the candles from their cakes and make another cake. 
Have each child choose one pre-cut numeral.  The children can then place, on their cake, the number of candles that matches the numeral they have chosen.  If the
children are interested, let them make more cakes to match numbers they have selected.

Literacy Birthday activity Literacy: Birthday Bingo
Amy B. suggests this early childhood activity saying, "This activity will help students recognize sight words such as the other students names and/or months of the year".

Materials: Teacher made bingo cards, place markers, I use little erasers that are in 
the shape of balloons, cakes, and candles.

Description: Make sure that everyone is familiar with their birthday before doing this activity. I use this activity for our letter "Bb" week. First I review birthdays 
with the kids by showing them a flashcard with a birthday printed on it. I read 
it to the class and the student whose birthday was printed on the card raises 
their hand. 

Then I pass out bingo cards that I have made with all of the students names on them. I only have 14, so I am able to put a freebie spot and use a few kids names twice. 
I then show the flashcard of the date and read it to them. The student with the birthday raises their hand and the other students try to find the birthday boy/girl name on their grid.  Five in a row gets a bingo and a Birthday Bingo Bear (gummy bear). All of the kids get gummy bears after we play the game several times.

Birthday IdeaBirthdays For Infants & Preschoolers
This birthday train by Nellie V. is a handy teacher made reminder for both teachers and preschool children. It also contributes to a print rich classroom as older youngsters recognize their names and the names of their classmates.

Materials: Pattern of a train with an engine and caboose, construction paper and 
white paper.

Description: Make the engine the teacher's name and the caboose the assistant
teacher's name.  The cars in the middle have months written on them, for example;
1st car has January on it, the 2nd car has February written on it and so on until you have all 12 months.  Take small pieces of white paper and write in black marker the 
infants / preschooler's name and birthday on the paper and place it under the month of their birthday. 

Birthday craft Craft: "Birthday & Holiday Candles"
This gift idea from Laura F. enhances children's self esteem, color recognition and fine motor skills (scooping). Youngsters can make them for a "special friend's"
birthday, a parent's birthday, a holiday gift or as a gift for a "at home" sick classmate.

Materials: Wax crystals, wicks, baby food jars or volitive holders from the dollar store and clear wrap.

Description: In advance teachers cut wicks to the height of the jars. Next children place wicks inside of  their jars.  Children choose two to three different colors of waxed crystals and scoop them into their glass jar. They may layer with different colors as they go along filling to the top. Cover with clear wrap and you have a beautiful gift for any occasion. They look very nice when lit at the dinner table. 

Comments: I was looking for something different for Mothers Day and while I was 
shopping at Walmart saw these crystals in the craft section. I thought lets try. My sons loved making their candles. They loved the choice of being able to choose the colors. My youngest son was very proud of himself and couldn't wait to show his grandmother. The crystals were very reasonably priced and there is a lot of crystals per bag. I tried this with my daycare children and they couldn't do enough. "We want to make more!"  It is a fun and easy craft and the wax crystals were neat to touch.
 

Counting Game: "Birthday Party Fun!"
If you don't mind having candy at a birthday party here's a game from Maree that can encourage older preschoolers to count. Or you can substitute a non candy treat to eat. Check for chocolate allergies.

Materials: One family block of chocolate, one dice, plate and a firm plastic knife and fork.

Description: Children gather in a group, the plate containing the chocolate, knife and fork is placed in the middle. One at a time the children start rolling the dice when someone rolls a 'six' the child starts eating the chocolate using the cutlery. He keeps eating the chocolate until another child rolls a six. Any number on the dice can be used.
Comments: A yummy way to learn about numbers.

There are lots of recipes for treats in the Food & Nutrition Theme and
is an entire theme devoted to Popcorn Fun.

Birthday Cake Monthly Birthdays
Marie D. celebrates birthdays each month with cooking activities.

Materials: Any birthday song the children know.

Description: We do birthdays once every month on the last thursday of the month. During circle time we talk about what month it is and then each child tells us  their birthday. If their birthday is that month they get a picture / sticker of a cake. When everyone is done, we talk about this month's birthday party. 

Each month we have different things for our party. We may make cookies, pudding, popcorn, applesauce and other things. As the children begin to learn the month of their birthday, I ask them to tell us the day/date. By the end of the year almost everyone knows their birthday day by month-day-and year.

For children who have birthdays in the summer or come to us after their birthday,  we have a party for them in June.

Comments: We also make hats with the birthday kids and let them line up first, 
hold the door and things like that on their day.
 

Birthday Cake Birthday Celebrations For Everyone!
Young children make birthday celebrations special with this easy early childhood activity from Marilyn M.

Materials: Pre baked cupcakes, canned frosting, various decorating materials such 
as colored sugar, colored sprinkles, miniature chocolate chips, tiny M & M's and 
tin foil.

Description: Each spring and fall we like to have a special day when we celebrate everyone's birthday by decorating cupcakes. We have a "table" made of tin foil for each child.  On it we put the pre baked cupcake, 1-2 tablespoons of frosting, and any decorations they might like to use plus a utensil for spreading the frosting.  The children are thrilled to play "cook" and we help them put their creations in ziplock bags to take home and eat for dessert later in the day. 
 

Bulletin Board: "Birthday Apple Tree"
Display the children's birthdays and use this tree by Annette C. to help them recognize their names and the letters in their names. Encourage the early math skills of counting and one-to-one correspondence also.

Materials: Construction paper tree, red, yellow and green construction paper apples with child names and birthday printed on them. I also laminated them.

Description: Put the construction paper tree up in a place where the children can see and reach it, and it is able to stay up all year. Put all the apples on the tree.  I also include the teacher's birthday's.

As a child has a birthday, their apple "falls" to the ground. More, less, & same can be discussed as apples fall. Summer birthday children celebrate their ½ year birthday and move their apples on the day we celebrate.

Comments: The children look at the tree often, counting the fallen apples and wonder whose will fall next.
 

Counting: "Birthday Party"
Julie F. reinforces counting and the early math concepts of addition & subtraction during this early childhood activity plan.

Materials: Set up a table as a birthday party, with plates, bowls, cups, spoons, 
knifes etc., Use a party banner and birthday cards etc. Be as imaginative as you 
like.  You'll need some sweets of different sorts and even biscuits if you like, 
whatever you think will be attractive to the children.

Description: After you have set out your table, which might be in the role play 
area, invite the children to a party.  this activity is meant to be an interactive role play experience that incorporates the above objectives.

With support and guidance you can get the children to share the sweets. Taking turns, youngsters count to see if everyone has the same, how many children have more or, less. "What must be done so that everyone has the same" etc.  With support from the adult, who is the model, youngsters will want to continue with the activity.
I leave this counting Birthday Party activity out so that children can come back to it and play with the counting focus in mind.

Comments: Teachers can replace the sweets with buttons, cubes, small building 
blocks etc., or food children have made out of play dough. We made a birthday cake to go with the party. Try making the cake out of clay and inserting some candle holders before the clay dries. When dry, paint the cake so that it looks real.
The children really enjoy this counting dramatic play experience.
 

Counting: "Milly Mouse's Birthday Party"
Emma I. helps children develop an understanding of early math subtraction with this preschool activity.

Materials: Copy of the rhyme 5 Big Balloons, washing line and 5 balloons.

Description: When all the children are seated on the carpet I tell the children 
that the class mascot (Milly Mouse in our case) had a birthday party for her 
friend Maisy. I have already blown up the 5 balloons and pegged them on the 
washing line. I have also strewn a few colored party streamers along the line 
for effect. The children are captivated by this.

Milly has left quite a mess for us to clear away. We begin by looking at the different colors and shapes of the balloons.  We then count them and I write the appropriate numeral on each. My classroom assistant (the teacher could also lead this part if no support is available) then tells us she knows a rhyme all about balloons and taking away. She shows us the 'finger symbol' for taking away (point your finger horizontally in front of your chest to make a minus sign).
We then recite the rhyme which goes like this:

5 big balloons I'm holding in my hands (children show 5 fingers), 
All of a sudden 1 went BANG!.
      (I burst 1 balloon, we count the remaining 4 and say
      the number sentence 5 - 1 leaves 4)
Comments: I used this activity during numeracy Open Morning which was watched by 8 parents. It was fantastic and since then several parents have used this activity 
or the rhyme at home to reinforce the learning.
 

Counting and Number Recognition
Practice counting from 1 to 10 with this early math activity from Marita P.

Materials: Styrofoam circles, birthday candles, paint in color of choice.

Description: Paint each styrofoam circle and then poke wholes in them up to ten. 
Place a number in front of each foam birthday cake.  Ask children to put in the appropriate number to wish a pretend person a birthday.  You can sing Happy 
Birthday if you are doing it as a whole group.

Comments: Most kids love celebrating birthdays.
 

Starry Me
Suzanne contributes this kindergarten & preschool activity saying that her objective is to, "Create awareness of birth dates that can be encompassed with a space or Christmas theme."

Materials: Star template, yellow paint, scissors, a single hole puncher, paper and 
crayons.

Description: 
1. Prepare a star template and photocopy onto yellow cardboard if 
 you don't wish the students to color the star on both sides.

2. Cut out the star.

3. Give each child their birthday to copy onto one side of the star. e.g..
    September 26, 1998
.
4. On the other side, have them write their name clearly and decorate it themselves.

5. When complete, punch a hole in the top and hang from the ceiling with fishing line!
     * These looked lovely hanging at Christmas time!
Comments: I can't believe that something so simple can mean so much as it did with my class.  At the end of the year, we even put them in the school's time capsule.

Take a look at the craft activities in the Christmas & Kwanzaa Theme
 

Birthday Bulletin Board Idea
This kindergarten birthday bulletin board by Melynda is something for teachers to do before school starts.  Then each child can find their name and birthday.

Materials: For my classroom, I choose to cut out a picture of a minnow fish because my group is called the minnows.  You will also needs markers and and a black pen and contact paper.

Description: Trace and cut out a fish that closely resembles a minnow. Then write each child's name and birthday in the center.  With the markers, you can decorate the fish.  Then contact the paper fish and hang them on the wall. Hang them to look like a school of fish.  If you have access to a computer or print shop program, you can print out any  shape you want and use the computer to decorate and write each child's name and birthday.  The parents and children get excited to see their own birthday sign on the wall.  Every child will know where their birthday sign is on the wall.

Birthday IdeaTake Home Birthday Banner
Here is an quick & easy idea from Diana M.

Whenever it's a child's birthday we make a birthday banner with large paper  and have children decorate. On it we print Happy Birthday along with a pattern of a  cake and the birthday child can take it home with them.

Birthday IdeaBirthday Balloon
Try this easy and inexpensive gift idea for the Birthday child from Dee.

Materials: Balloons, sticks and birthday stickers.

Description: As an inexpensive birthday present for children you can blow up a 
balloon and attach to a stick that you find outside!  Then decorate with special birthday stickers. Kids love them!

Literacy Birthday activity Literacy: "A Birthday Story"
P.S. offers this fun way to share a child's birthday which is great for creative thinking 

Materials: Pictures of child.

Description: Prior to a child's birthday, send home a note requesting photos of the 
child as an infant, toddler, and preschooler.  On the day of his or her birthday 
celebration, display the photos in sequence,  Invite your class to use the photos to help create a story about the child.  Record the story on a sheet of paper and then send it home with the photos for the child and his parents to enjoy. 
A priceless keepsake!

Birthday craft Craft: Birthday Celebrations
Help celebrate a child's birthday with this craft activity from Adrienne.

Materials: Cupcake holders, tissue (any color), brown or white construction paper,
candy sprinkles and glue.

Description: Pre cut small circles from the construction paper to fit the top of the cupcake paper.  Or if the children are over 3 years old have them do it themselves.
Place a small wadded piece of tissue paper and glue it to the inside of the cupcake paper. The tissue paper should fill the cupcake holder to the top. Next, glue the paper circle to the top of it. Now, spread glue over the top of the circle and add sprinkles. Let dry and shake off the excess sprinkles.

Comments: This is a lot of fun. Some of the kids took the cupcakes home and tricked there dads into thinking that they were real cupcakes.

Birthday craft Craft: "Clifford Piñata"
Inspired by the Clifford the Dog books and children's interests Karen K. helps her class prepare a Clifford Piñata for use on special occasions such as a Birthday Day or Clifford Day. Children use fine motor skills during the creation of the piñata. 

Materials: One 15" red helium quality balloon, newspaper, liquid starch and red tissue paper.

Description: Begin by blowing up a balloon as big as possible and tie.  Place the 
balloon in the sensory table for children to access.  Set out newspaper for the 
children to tear and dip into starch and cover the balloon with at least one layer of newspaper.  Now, cover with red tissue paper!  Hang or sit to dry for 
two days.

When dry add eyes, nose, mouth and floppy ears.  If you want to add goodies inside the piñata, cut as small an opening off the top as possible, pop and remove the balloon and tie a string on a popsicle or pencil and insert and adjust the stick horizontally.
Finally, hang from the ceiling or outside on a tree.  Use a handkerchief for a blindfold and a foam coated bat and let each child take a turn to whack.  Enjoy!

Comments: Ideal project for small groups of children.  Saves time by using 
tissue paper for color instead of paint.  Handy to use starch instead of flour 
and water or wallpaper paste.
 

Circle Time Teacher Tips
Get children's attention and promote listening skills with this circle time activity by Judy.

Description: The first thing I do when I get children in a circle is, ask them 
to raise their hands, wiggle their fingers and lower their hands down.
I repeat this a few times until I get their attention. Now they are ready to listen.
I also do this when I find the children getting a little unruly or bored.

Another trick is to ask them to fill their mouths with air to make a big bubble. Tell them you want to see who has the biggest bubble. Or just say, take a deep breath in and blow it out. Pretend that you are blowing up a balloon and then it pops so you have to start all over. Or pretend that you are putting out candles on your
birthday cake.

Comments: This has worked like magic for me! Besides being good breathing exercises, these also help calm children and can get a noisy class to quiet down in an instant.

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