Sand Table in Kinder??

Everytime I tell someone I have a sand table in my kinder room, I get funny are you serious???? I love the sand table!!!! Normally, I start the year using it as simply a "play" center. I teach in a school where kindergarten is typically the first experience my kiddos have with school (very limited pre-k program and even that is half-day). So, the sand table is something they can do and enjoy from day one.

I usually leave the sand table open for the first month of school. At the end of the first month, I make a HUGE deal about how much they've learned and we close the sand table (with the table closed the top becomes our word study center). The kids quickly forget about the sand.....and life goes on.

But, I have decided to pull out the sand again! I placed a whole bunch of letters in the boxed and covered them with sand.

Now, the kids use the sand as a choice in our word study center. Basically, they have a   recording sheet. 

1. They choose a word wall word and hunt for the letters they need to make that word wall word. 
2. Then once they have made the word - they write it in a cute bear! 
3. Finally they get to grab a Teddy Graham and make it disappear!

Hope you enjoy!


  1. I use a sand table in my classroom too. The students LOVE it.


  2. Sounds like fun. I wish I was in your class! ;-)

    The Learning Curve

  3. Thanks both of you.....I always use it at the beginning of the year, but don't usually use it so late in the year....But they are LOVING it!......and it is completely academic so ....... (not that oral language centers aren't academic, but it's something I can justify :0)

  4. Developmentally, kinders still NEED a sand table and it helps me differentiate my instruction based on student interest and learning style. I too put 'stuff' in it to make it fun AND productive. This weekend I'm taking out the water and putting in green rice with hidden 'golden coins.' Some coins will have nonsense words, some with have real words. They will record what they find on a sheet and come read their list of real and nonsense words to their center partner or me. I plan on blogging about it next week. Come check it out.

  5. That sounds awesome Marsha!! THanks for sharing such a great way to use the sandtable.:0)

  6. I think it's pretty awesome, we used sensory tables in 3 & 4 yr old's in a child development center that I taught in. Some children have not had the opportunity to experience that before. I think it's great that you can have it, I can just IMAGINE the looks I would get if I requested one.

    The Daily Alphabet

  7. Marsha - Please blog right away. I am in K now after 5 years in PreK and it is so sad how play centers are considred inappopriate. Thanks for opening up a whole world of ideas for the table beyond the "fishing for letters" games.

  8. Erin - I also have an activity where I bury the little alphabet learning toys in the sand too. Then they can find one with a particular beginning sound. Later they can find an item and then segment the sounds in the word.

    While my district does appreciate "play" centers they prefer to see "academics"incorporated - and I do too. It's often so easy to take these "play"centers up a notch later in the year!

  9. What a fun idea! I love your blog! :) I noticed you are also from Texas. It's always a joy to follow other Texas bloggers, since we have the same TEKS to teach. Thanks for visiting my little blog. ;)