So, it’s March and you’re looking for activities for preschoolers. Even though the winter season isn’t quite over yet, spring is right around the corner. Also around the corner during the month of March are two key holidays that come to mind. The first is St. Patrick’s Day. The second is Easter. Aside from Christmas and Halloween, Easter is a big deal for many kids. With St. Patrick’s Day and Easter in mind, there are some great activities preschoolers can exercise to stimulate them mentally and physically. There are some children that are brought up in religious households, namely Christian and Jewish, that celebrate Easter as more than going on the hunt to find hidden chocolates.
Among the Jewish, as well as some Christians, they celebrate the Seven Days of Unleavened Bread, as well as Passover. Easter originally got its name from William Tyndale when he became the first person to fully translate the Holy Bible into English form for print. He came up with the word “Easter” as a named special occasion, marking the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Some Christians in the community are offended by the term “Easter” as the pronunciation of the name is too close for comfort with a pagan holiday known as Eostre.
The History of Eostre
Eostre was the goddess of fertility. The concept behind bunnies laying chocolate eggs as treats got its roots from what both the Christian and Jewish communities regard as pagan. However, William Tyndale didn’t choose Easter with Eostre in mind. He chose Easter with Esther in mind. Tyndale’s Easter has much more in common with Esther as Easter was designed as a three-day event that saw the end result of a population saved from certain annihilation. During the Babylonian era, Esther was the Hebrew wife of a king who unwittingly signed a decree that threatened the entire Hebrew population.
Esther embarked on a three-day run of fasting and prayer, encouraging the entire Hebrew population to do the same. At the end of the three days, instead of the Hebrews facing extinction by their enemies, the tide was turned. Not only were they saved as a population but rose in power. This story has far more in common with the events that took place during a certain Passover event that saw Jesus Christ put to death, only to rise again three days later. What happened after that third day? He not only rose from the dead but was glorified.
The Story of Easter
Easter is the combination of Esther and Passover as Tyndale was trying to find an appropriate English word when he copied the New Testament from its Greek text. He knew he couldn’t use Passover as this was not the same event as the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. A brand new word needed to be used and Easter was it. Contrary to the beliefs of less educated religious scholars, Esther was the best frame of reference Tyndale had to go on, not Eostre. With this in mind, as you go over the list of March activities for preschoolers, Easter is included from a biblical perspective and nonbiblical.
As for St. Patrick’s Day, this is also a special occasion that’s highly regarded among Christian believers. For them, every March 17th isn’t about lucky charms, clovers, pots of gold, and shamrocks. It’s about honoring a man that brought Christianity to Ireland while it was still under Roman occupation.
1. Advent Calendar
One popular tradition that’s become more commonplace in the household has been advent calendars that have chocolates hidden behind a numbered popout door. From one to twenty-five, each day the child would pop open the designated door and enjoy whatever treat sits behind it. Over time, creativity kicked in that had more than just chocolates sitting behind the door as adults got in on the fun too. It’s also become a favorite activity that doesn’t have to strictly be during Christmas, either. For the month of March, this can also be done. It’s up to you if you want to create the calendar on your own and have your preschooler become pleasantly surprised as the countdown to Easter begins or have them at least take part in the calendar’s design. This can be as simple or as complex as you choose it to be.
Advent Calendar Details
There are some excellent advent calendar kits featured on sites like Amazon you can work on, either on your own or with your preschooler. You can also use a craft storage organizer as their designs make an excellent canvas to create an advent calendar. Kids love to be creative, so you can easily work with them as they turn the blank calendar canvas into a work of art. You can either use Easter as the theme or simply go with a Spring season concept as well.
What’s great about this activity is if the preschooler gets to decide how to decorate the advent calendar, it taps into their creativity skills. When the calendar is complete with the hidden treasures behind each marked door, work with the preschooler to identify the correct date so they can collect their prize for the day. This activity applies logic skills where the child will better understand how a numbering system works. This doesn’t just apply to calendars. This applies to everything.
2. Coloring Rainbows
Kids love to color, especially preschoolers. The activity to take a blank canvas and applying the brilliance of different colors to it is fascinating. For them, they’re bringing something dull to life through the power of creation. Coloring in rainbows, which is a popular theme in March as St. Patrick’s Day approaches, allows children to tap into their creativity. Some coloring books even come with cute stories, encouraging even preschoolers how to read. On the internet, accessing free-to-print pages that have rainbows as the theme is easy enough to come by. There are also rainbow-themed coloring books that are easy to find items online and in stores.
3. Craft a Birdhouse
With spring on the way, birds typically come to mind when thinking about animals that seem to become more visible. Why not encourage your preschooler to craft a birdhouse? Whether the intent is to use it as a home for a bird that may be interested to move into one or it’s strictly for decorative purposes, this is a great activity that will serve the preschooler well. They will learn how to puzzle together their idea of a dream home that’s perfect for a bird to nest in and perhaps start a family. Sites like Amazon have birdhouse kits preschoolers can work with. Aside from putting together a birdhouse, they can also decorate it according to their wishes.
4. Hide and Seek, Leprechaun Style
For some great interactive fun, appoint someone (perhaps yourself) to dress up as a leprechaun. Costumes are easy enough to come by. The idea here is to encourage the preschooler to find the leprechaun that’s holding a pot of gold and catch it before it gets away. That leprechaun will have with them a small pot that’s loaded up with either gold-colored or gold-wrapped chocolate coins or gifts.
What you put in that pot is entirely up to you. The idea is to encourage the preschooler to embark on a detective-style mission to locate the leprechaun and catch it before it can make the getaway. If you’re looking to make it easier and more colorful for the child, pin up a rainbow and have the pot of gold either sitting there in the open or hidden somewhere with a leprechaun toy holding onto it. On sites like Amazon, there’s an Irish-themed elf that has arms and legs that can wrap itself around the pot if you choose to go with this idea.
5. Make a Pot
Going into the month of March, Irish folklore and St. Patrick’s Day usually comes to mind. One great activity for preschoolers is to make their own pot of gold. Based on the instructions provided by Simple Parent, this crafting idea is bound to keep kids busy, as well as entertained.
6. March Montessori
Montessori is a method of education that taps into a child’s natural interests by allowing them to have hands-on learning experiences. This helps develop real-world skills. Why not theme Montessori for the month of March in mind? First off, what is the preschooler into? Birds? Flowers? Photography? Since March and the color green seem to go hand in hand, why not encourage the preschooler to work with green as a color scheme when it comes to tapping into such interests? With preschooler-friendly cameras, this is one method they can use to access their interests and take photographs. Once the pics are developed, the child can either design their own photo album or a special collage. It doesn’t necessarily have to be March-themed. Whatever works to pique the child’s interest, go with it.
7. Painting Eggs
When it comes to painting up some previously hard-boiled eggs, this is a tradition that is a favorite activity among Eastern European kids, including preschoolers. According to legend, after Jesus Christ was resurrected, Mary Magdalene approached the Roman Emperor Tiberius to tell him the news. She also gave him an egg as a present. At first, the emperor didn’t believe her and commented if her story was true then the egg she just gave him would turn red.
Sure enough, it turned red the moment he made his statement. The source of this tale can be found on a number of Catholic websites that share this tale about Mary Magdalene, as well as on Culture Trip. If you’re a little uneasy of a preschooler handling an actual egg, go with a coloring book that’s Easter themed. Those are easy enough to come by, whether it be anytime online or on the shelves of stores that usually begin carrying Easter-related items before Valentine’s Day is even over.
8. Scavenger Hunt
Kids love to explore. They also love to collect stuff. Why not go with a March-themed scavenger hunt that encourages preschoolers to do what they love? Scavenger hunts are as easy as listing two items kids need to look to put together a collection. Put the collection on display for their achievements. On Fantastic Fun and Learning, there are some great scavenger item ideas that are perfect for the month of March.
9. St. Patrick Dress-Up
Every March 17th marks St. Patrick’s Day. Who is the man behind this special day? St. Patrick was born in Britain while the Romans occupied its territory during the late fourth century. When he was sixteen years old, a kidnapper took him to Ireland as a slave. He managed to escape, only to return to convert the Irish population to Christianity. Before his death on March 17, 461 CE, he managed to establish churches, monasteries, and schools. There were several legends that rose up regarding the man. Such legends included the ability to drive the snakes out of Ireland and the use of shamrocks to explain the Trinity. The day of St. Patrick’s death has since marked an occasion to celebrate the man and his accomplishments.
This is why St. Patrick’s Day is all about Irish folklore and traditions. Discount stores load up with items focused on St. Patrick’s Day. They also have a fabulous collection of coloring books. Furthermore, they have novelty items that can turn this into more than a single-day event. Why not go green from the first day of March until March 17th? Make a game out of it by having the preschooler identify what’s green. Then encourage them to think about the subject before they answer. If there are objects in the area that are green, have the preschooler identify what it is. That particular activity encourages them to practice some detective skills that will come in handy as they get older.
10. Tall Irish Tales
St. Patrick’s Day is famous for folklore. There are scores of kid-friendly storybooks to read to preschoolers at bedtime. Preschoolers love a good bedtime story so why not use the month of March to share Irish folklore? Such books are easy enough to come by. Or, if you prefer, make one up of your own. Maybe you and the preschooler can make one up together.