pirate activities

Pirate Activities for Kids! Early Childhood Educator Mrs.A’s pirate themes crafts & activities. Fun for kids & toddlers alike!

Pirate Play Activities – Ways to Play #5

Just as children have their own strengths and challenges, they also have their own ways to play. Pirate play activities are favorites of another boy. His name also starts with R and he is 4 and a half years old. His mother describes his play:

pirate play activities

R likes playing pirates with daddy. His daddy will hide a little baggie filled with “treasure.” They build a boat with couch cushions and shoot cannon balls to scare awake the sharks. Then follow a map to find the treasure. I’m usually upstairs when they do this and all I hear is outbursts of “Yo ho ho!” and “Shiver me timbers!”

Doesn’t this sound wonderful? I’m sure both R and his daddy have lots of fun. Pretend play can start with quite young toddlers, and it gets much more involved as kids get older. Likely, R and his parents have read pirate books, maybe watched some pirate shows, and talked about pirates. In a way, he has made a collection of information that he has stored up about pirates, like treasure in a chest. He uses what he knows as he pretends pirates.

Pretend play builds more than imagination. It also builds empathy. For children to understand what another person is feeling, they need to be able to imagine themselves in that situation. Don’t we often say to kids, “How would you feel if…?” Children can only do this, if they have some skills to pretend. When we are trying to teach kids about safety, we also ask them to use their imagination. When we ask, “What could happen if…” we are also asking kids to imagine.

Pretend play is powerful for brains as children connect their thinking to actions. Creating a mental picture of the whole story is the critical skill of visualizing. There’s lots of organizing and planning too, as well as special ways to use language. These pirate play activities are a treasure for learning and fun, aren’t they? Any kid-pirates at your house?

Pirate Fun Activities For Kids: The Real Treasure

Pirate activities can range from counting to drawing maps to simple science experiments to cooking, creating, moving, and more; they can also include ideas for social and emotional development. And kindergarten readiness is more than academic, it includes social and emotional aspects too.

pirate activities for kidsDuring the preschool years children’s brains grow faster than at any other time in their lives, but we sometimes forget that their hearts, that is emotions and feelings, are also developing. We need to give kids the opportunities for building their social and emotional skills as well as their muscles and brains.

This weekend is a special time for me. My uncle and aunt will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and many family members from all over the US and Canada will be getting together. There have been lots of changes but the connections are still there. In many ways, these connections between people are the real treasure. These connections are often what gives us the strength to deal with challenges, make changes in our own lives, and persevere through difficult times. We share both joy and tears with our friends and family.

pirate activities for kidsFor a play-of-the-day this weekend, spend some time with others building relationships and connections. For children, those relationships are especially important because they are the model for when kids have to begin creating relationships at daycare, preschool and kindergarten on their own. We all need to make sure there are special people in our emotional treasure chest. Would you agree this is important for young children?

P.S. Has this series of pirate fun and learning activities been helpful for you and your little pirates?

Pirate Fun Activities For Kids #26: Pirate Snacks

Pirates and kids need snacks and preschool kids are not too young to be part of making snacks and, even more important, making healthy snack choices. Kitchens are full of treasures for fun, learning, and kindergarten readiness, like counting, colors, shapes, sizes, comparing, making decisions, etc.

pirate snacks for kidsKids like finger food and Pirate Loot can be made from unsweetened or less sugary cereal like cheerios or shreddies and adding in some sunflower seeds, raisins, other dried fruit, chopped nuts if allergies are not an issue, a few chocolate chips, and less nutritious, but often a favorite, fishy crackers. Add in some pretzel ‘wooden legs’ or ‘swords’ and some round, crunchy round cereal to be cannon balls. Kids may have other suggestions from their creative imaginations. When kids are involved in the cooking, they begin to develop some ownership of their choices.

pirate snacks for kidsFruit can be slid onto wooden skewers to make Pirate Swords. Using a plastic picnic knife, little hands can handle slicing soft fruits like bananas. Big hands can help since the skewer points can be sharp. Apple, watermelon, and pineapple can be cut into chunks; strawberries and grapes can be used whole or in smaller pieces. Orange sections may need to be cut in half if they are large. Peaches, papayas, and nectarines taste yummy too. The fruit colors make quite a rainbow and at the end of one is another place where treasure can be found.

pirate-snacks-beachWith the fruit choices it’s fun to make a pattern like apple, banana, strawberry; apple, banana, strawberry. Patterning is an important thinking skill and brain strategies.

Blueberries mixed in a smoothie can make Oceans and Waves in a glass or bowl, even if the water is purple instead of blue. Sprinkle on a few graham cracker crumbs to be the sand on the beach. What are some other ideas for Pirate Snacks? Try some veggies for a green Seaweed Smoothie.

What are some other ideas for Pirate Snacks?
P.S. What is a pirate’s favorite food? Fish and ships!

Pirate Fun Activities #25: Boats To Float

Kids are natural scientists exploring constantly so making some pirate boats that float is a voyage of discovery, fun, learning, and developing skills for kindergarten readiness and beyond. The recycling box at home holds a treasure of things to use, like styrofoam containers, corks, plastic and metal lids, popsicle sticks, etc. Include some treasures to … Continue reading Pirate Fun Activities #25: Boats To Float

Pirate Fun Activities For Kids #24: Treasure Box Craft

Pirates and kids need a place to keep treasures and making a special box is a great learning and fun project that helps develop kindergarten readiness too. Do you remember having a special box to keep your treasures in as a child? My favorite was similar to this one, all made of sea shells. The … Continue reading Pirate Fun Activities For Kids #24: Treasure Box Craft

Pirate Fun For Kids #23: Playdough

Playdough likely wasn’t treasure for pirates, but it is for kids because they can use it for all kinds of fun, learning, and kindergarten readiness. To seem more like real ‘dough’, money that is, you can use yellow or gold color playdough. Other colors can be used to make different sorts of jewels. Playdough can … Continue reading Pirate Fun For Kids #23: Playdough

Pirate Fun For Kids #22: Treasure in a Bottle

Pirates likely didn’t worry about their feelings, but for kids, learning how to regulate their bodies and feelings is part of early development as well as kindergarten readiness. Even though they are very young, feelings can be deeply intense for children. Emotions can overwhelm kids and they react to something small with big actions such … Continue reading Pirate Fun For Kids #22: Treasure in a Bottle

Pirate Fun Activities For Kids #21: Pirate Patterns

Real pirates were often successful at what they were doing because they could see the patterns and patterning is an important skill for children’s learning and kindergarten readiness. Pirates could see the patterns in the tides, the waves, and certainly the transporting of treasure. They were quick to use patterns to their advantage. We certainly … Continue reading Pirate Fun Activities For Kids #21: Pirate Patterns

Pirate Fun Activities for Kids #19: Block Play

Treasure is usually something that pirates find but today the treasure is something that little pirates can do: building and playing with blocks or other construction toys. For fun, learning and developing kindergarten readiness, blocks and construction toys can be wood, plastic, sponge, or even recycled materials. Kids can use these to make pirate boats, … Continue reading Pirate Fun Activities for Kids #19: Block Play