Monday, February 25, 2019


I’m speaking at the New Jersey Kindergarten Conference this morning and I’ll be making pompoms that they can SHAKE AND TAKE back to their classrooms to help kids learn. “If you want to catch a rabbit, you have to have a rabbit trap.”  These pompoms are a great example of a “rabbit trap” that will capture children’s interest as the move and learn.

Directions: Draw lines from the top of the lunch sack to the bottom flap about ½” apart. Let children decorate their bags, and then cut down on the lines. Place the flap face down on the table and roll. Wrap a rubber band around the bottom section to make a handle. (You can also use tape to secure the handle.) “Squinch” the strips and shake like pompoms.

Letter Aerobics Put pompoms in the air for letters that start at the top dotted line, out in front of you for letters that start at the middle dotted line, and down low for letters with a tail that go below the line. 
*Spell sight words using Letter Aerobics.

Cheer Words 
Move and shake pompoms as you spell out names or high frequency words. “Give me a G. ‘G’ I’ve got a G, you’ve got a Give me an O. ‘O’ I’ve got an O, you’ve got an O. Give me a T. ‘T’ I’ve got a T, you’ve got a T. What’s it spell? GOT!” 

Use for “Who Let the Letters Out?”, “Phonercise,” “The Vowel Cheer” and other letter chants and songs.

Invisible Writing 
Write letters, numbers, and words in the air with pompoms. (Children call this “air brush” writing!)

Clap out syllables in words using pompoms.

Compound Words 

Extend pompoms and say each word; then bring together and say the compound word. 

Sing this song to the tune of "Skip to My Lou" as you shake pompoms. 
        Sun (shake right)
        Fun (shake left)
        Those words rhyme.        Sun (shake right)
        Fun (shake left)
        Those words rhyme.
        Sun (shake right)
        Fun (shake left)
        Those words rhyme.
        They all end with "un."
*Continue using other words that rhyme.

Use pompoms for choral reading as children make these motions for punctuation marks.       
        Period – Pompom held up like “stop.”
        Question Mark – Touch head with pompom and shrug shoulders.
        Exclamation Point – Pompom up high and shake.


Clap out math patterns and have children repeat or extend.

Karate Counting 

Pretend to chop from left to right as you count.

Skip Counting 

March and shake pompoms as you skip count. 

Math Facts

Hands in the air and say a number.  Touch heads and say "plus" or "minus."  Touch waist and say another number.  Touch knees and say "equals."  Touch floor and say the answer.

Positional Words  

Have children follow directions with their pompoms. Can you put them on your head? Can you put them behind you? Can you put them between your knees? 

Partner Patty Cake 
Have children choose a partner. Let them say rhymes, the alphabet, or count as they patty cake.

Simon Says 

Can children play this game and follow directions with their pompoms? 

Hint!  Take up pompoms and save them in a tub or bag in between activities.