Sunday, July 22, 2012

ARRGGHHH!!! It's Pirate Week!

We absolutely LOVE pirate week!  All the kids like all the crafts, books, music, and the whole idea of being pirates for a week.  Have to say this is one of the teachers' favorite themes too!  It's just so much fun to shout out, "ARRGGHH Matey!"  for really NO reason at all  LOL
 Come along with us as I take you through a week of "Pirating"!

Books -  There are many, many books about pirates, but here are a few we enjoy!

              How I Became a Pirate  - Melinda Long
              A Pirate's Tale               - Alan Jardine
              Pirate Pete                     - Kim Kennedy
             Shiver Me Letters ABC  - June Sobel (great for when you add letters to your sand table)
              My Friend the Octopus  - Julian Defries
             A Pirate's Life for Me      - Julie Thompson
             Do Pirates Take Baths?   - Kathy Tucker
             Pirates Past Noon            - Mary Pope Osborne
             Pirates Don't Change Diapers  - Melinda Long

Every pirate needs a name, so during centers or playtime, call each child over to make a pirate name tag.
To make their name tags we used heavy cardstock.  We had printed a page with the pirate picture at the top and each child's name and left a blank area at the bottom for them to choose a picture and name.  Each child had a pirate job so these are some of the pictures they chose from:
  Have them glue their desired pictures and write their pirate name across the bottom.

Pirate Crafts

Our preschool is Monday - Thursday so we usually make a pirate item the first three days and then use all of our tools to hunt for treasure on Thursday.


For each hat, take a sheet of black construction paper and fold in half.  Start at the top folded edge and draw down and out to make half of the pirate hat.  When you cut it out and fold out you have your whole hat.  Next, help your child put glue around the outside edges of the hat (staying inside about a fourth of an inch to avoid running off your paper.  Let them choose a color of glitter to sprinkle on the glue.  Next you can add any emblem to the center (pictures you have printed off, stickers, etc.  For the finishing touch (and it really does MAKE the whole hat.....add a colorful feather! Let these dry overnight then add a strip of black paper for the band.
The children wear these the rest of the week during school and will take home after our pirate party on Thursday.


For your telescopes you will need:
         1 - Paper towel tube per child
         1 - Piece of foil about 6 - 7 inches wide
         1 - Colored tape or masking tape or black electrical tape will work too.
         Stickers, foam stickies, cut out pictures to glue, etc

Help each child roll their tube inside the foil.  Fold the excess end pieces tightly into the ends of the tube.  Use your tape to tape off ends and a line about 1/3 of the way down for your hand to hold.  Let them decorate with stickers.
These can be used the next few days to play games like:  I Spy, Have them hunt for different shapes throughout your room, Shout out a certain letter and see who can find it first.  Lots of ways to use your telescopes!


To start....we printed a coloring page with the pictures shown above for each child. We used the page find here:
Use a black marker to draw around each small picture and have the child cut out each shape.  Have them glue (use plenty of glue because these will get a little wet) each picture on.....making sure the ship and treasure X pictures or in opposite corners.
Once pictures are on, help them use a black permanent marker and starting at their ship...make a dotted line to show the path they should follow to find their treasure.  You can kind of guide them so it doesn't end up a scribbled mess  :o)
Once pictures are on, crinkle the paper up into a ball and then flatten out a little.
Your last step will be to add a couple of teabags to a shallow dish of water and let them steep a minute.  Then let the child use the teabags to stamp tea and water all over their map to give it an old weathered look.
Let dry and then use the next day for your hunt.  These will also roll up and can be stored inside their telescopes.


Pirates in Training!  NOT everyone can be a pirate!  

It takes a lot of hard work to become a pirate. You cannot expect to just step onto a ship and know what a pirate is supposed to do.  To get in shape, you must first complete PIRATE BOOT CAMP!

Set up a training obstacle course for your pirates.  These are some things we use:

Plastic slide  (for learning to climb ladders and rigging)
Wooden balance beam or board (to learn how to walk the plank without falling in to the sharks)
Tunnel (never know when you might have to Hit the Deck and crawl under some cannonball smoke)
Small table (sometimes pirates have to climb onto crates to get away from other bad pirates)
Hoops (You may find yourself having to hop through small fires if your ship is hit)

You can add whatever items you would like.  We set the whole thing up and then turn on some pirate music and have them follow in line and complete the course a few times before they can become REAL pirates!  If their foot falls off the balance beam, YIKES...they have been bitten by a shark and must go back to start and start over.  :o)
House Area:  
During pirate week, our house/kitchen area becomes the Pirate's Galley.  The children in this area must now cook for the pirates of the ship.  See what kind of creative names they can come up for the things they think pirates eat.  Do pirates eat normal foods or some crazy things like shark eyeballs, octopus tentacles, etc.

Sand Table:


Pirates LOVE to dig in sand! They are sure that if there is sand....there is GOLD!
Hide gold coins, gems, ABC letters (Shiver Me Letters book), necklaces, rings, etc and give the children little shovels and sifters to find as many things as they can.  You can also have them sort all of their treasure into categories and count to see of which item they have the most.

Pirate Eye Patch Game
You can find this game at, I think, Oriental Trading and other novelty stores, but I just drew my own onto a poster board and then laminated.  Cut out enough eye patches for each child (I laminated mine so I can just reuse instead of making each time).  I have a # on each of mine so they know which one is theirs.
Tie a pirate bandana or scarf over the child's eyes.  Slowly turn them around three times and then point in direction of the pirate face.  Give each child a turn and see who can get the closest to the outlines eye patch.

Hot Gold (Played like Hot Potato) We use a golden egg or gold coin.

Have children sit in circle...Indian Style or pretzel legs (whichever you prefer).  Their knees should be touching.  Play some pirate music and have them pass the gold.  They are NOT allowed to throw the gold into a person's hands...they must place it right into the next person's hands.  If they throw it to them...they are now out and must sit in the ocean with the sharks :o)  They also cannot HOLD onto the gold for too long (which pirates are known to try to do).  Those thieving pirates must also join the sharks :o)
Pause your music throughout the game and whoever is holding the gold when the music stops, must leave the game.  Scoot kids together once more and resume playing until only one left.
When it gets down to only 2 players we do this:  Have them sit facing each other with a foot or two between them.  When they get the gold, they must touch it to their chin first before placing in the other child's hands.  That way they are not just pushing it back and forth.

Pirate Patterning: Use foam pirate shapes (available at craft stores like Pat Catan's, etc) to pattern & sort.

Treasure File Folder game:  Have them match the correct # coins to the matching chest.
                       ( Just printed out pictures and glues on and laminated)

More Pattering:  Choose a few gems, and colored coins to put in a small chest.  Draw a picture of them and make pattern strips the kids can match and continue the pattern. 

Coin Sorting  Place pictures similar to these into the bottoms of 4 dishes and have children sort pennies,    nickels, dimes and quarters.

Pirate Finger Puppets:  These are just fun to play with or you can use them for addition and subtraction.
                                 Give them 3 to put on their fingers and then add two many do they have?
                                 Now have them give you 4 and see how many they have left.

Pirate Memory:   Print out two copies of each picture card you choose.  You can find lots of pics online.
                              Laminate for longer use.  Lay the cards face down in short rows.  Take turns
                              flipping over two cards.  If they get to keep.  If they don't, turn back
                              over in the same spot and the next person goes.  When all cards have been
                              matched, count your matches to determine a winner.

Make a Treasure Chest:   If you don't have some type of chest to use for your can easily make one out of a shoe box.  I used one that has an attached hinge-type lid.  Let kids glue some tan paper to the sides and top.  Add some paper straps, latch, and skull crossbones or whatever pirate pic to the top.


It is finally the last day for pirate week and that means.....TREASURE HUNT  & PARTY!!!  HOORAY!

Before children get there, place clues throughout your room or school.  We send them to our school library and when they find the clue there it might say.  You must do 10 Toe touches before I tell you where to find the next clue or at the principal's office they might have to sing the ABCs.  You can think up clues to fit your group.  At the end of your hunt have your chest with a big red X on it, hidden in your room somewhere.  Have it filled with things like necklaces, Rolos (gold wrapped), Ring pops, pirate stickers or tattoos, mini Reeses Cups, etc.  We love these gold necklaces from Pat Catan's (they come in a pack of 12 for under $2.00)  The kid's love them.

To start your hunt.  When you are ready to start your hunt, just happen to "FIND" a note laying around your room from Captain Red Beard!  
 This is what ours said one year (to help you out):
Ahoy and shiver me timbers Mateys!

My name be Captain Red Beard and I
was scrounging around your classroom
last night looking for some gold!

But avast and rattle me bones --
Ye have none!!!

I felt bad for you lads and lassies so I
hid some of me OWN pirate booty in a
treasure chest somewhere in your building.

You must search for clues and 
follow the directions on them to

The first clue can be found where you
Line up to go to the outhouse!

Good Luck Mateys!

Once you have found your treasure, divvy the booty up amongst your pirates for loot to take home.

For the rest of your party you can eat some snacks:

Here is a cool cake (From Family Fun magazine):
Pirate Mix :  Give each child some of each in a bowl & mix up

Pirate Peg Legs (pretzel sticks)
Cannonballs (Cocoa Puffs)
Gold coins (banana slice)

Pirate Ship Snack:  (I know the pic isn't very good, but I just drew it a second ago  LOL)

 Use a wide apple slice and a toothpick stuck in it with cheese cubes and a pirate flag attached.

You can also play pirate music while eating or play a pirate movie to watch while having snack!

Well.....I think that is quite enough stuff to get your Pirate Week or party off to a good start and help you have a fun time!

ARRGGHH Mateys!  Have a wonderful day filled with GOLD!


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