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Montessori-inspired Shark Themed Practical Life Activities

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It's no secret that the boys are HUGE shark fans.  In honor of Shark Week, I thought I'd put a few activities together for them.  And if I have my way, you'll definitely see a few more.  Today's activities are focused on practical life skills.  These activities were designed with the three older kiddos in mind.  Here's what we're up to!

Shark Weaving

I found this fabulous ribbon on clearance at our local craft store.  To me it looks like a shark and water pattern.  Even if it's not, we can pretend it is.  The kiddos will practice weaving the ribbon using the Cabinet Shelf provided.  I LOVE using a cabinet shelf for weaving because it's raised far enough from the ground that the kiddos can easily put their hands underneath without having to worry about lifting and holding what they're doing.  As the kiddos weave, a beautiful shark pattern is created.

Tweezing Shark Teeth

Dinomite has started quite a collection of shark teeth.  He was kind enough to let me borrow them for this activity, with the stipulations that no girls can use it.  He's definitely in that phase.  I agreed, only because I didn't dare chance having his sisters break some of the teeth, but knew Bulldozer and Dinomite could really use some tweezing practice.  Each tooth is a different shape and size, so the activity provides opportunities for variations when choosing a tweezing approach.  Tweezing teeth also provides Dinomite with a new method of observation, as his fingers are much bigger than some of the teeth, so it's hard to get an up close look unless you use tweezers.

Tagging Sharks

The only two necessary items for this activity are Gummy Blue Sharks and a Toothpicks.  Kiddos will carefully "tag"each shark on the proper fin, gently, making sure they don't penetrate all the way through the gummy shark, but enough to leave a mark or "tag."  This activity was definitely inspired by episodes of Shark Week we've seen in the past and encourages learning and respect towards sharks.

Shark Transfer and Sort
In this activity the kiddos will use the Tongs provided to find the Sharks in the large bowl filled with blue dyed rice.  When they find the sharks they will transfer them to one of the bowls provided. The other bowl will be used to put Dolphins and Whales in, as they are also hidden in the bowl.  I love this tong activity because there is an extra layer of work involved, as one must sift through the rice to find the sharks with tongs in hand.  It takes coordination and will definitely help kiddos prepare for future cooking endeavors.  The tongs used in this activity encourage a lot of fine motor coordination and are great practice for scissor cutting.  I placed the whales in the bowl as well to encourage more learning throughout the process, especially as the kiddos are older.  Update:  There have been at least three times outside of learning time that I'm looking for Bulldozer and find him in the learning time room doing this activity.  This makes my heart so happy!

For those who are looking for more shark activities, printables and resources, be sure to check out the posts below.
Shark Gifts and Resources for Kids Shark Unit 2 with Free Printables Shark Activities for Tots and Preschoolers Montessori-inspired Children's Books About Sharks Shark Unit 1 Shark Activities for Tots Montessori-inspired Shark Unit Syllabus
This post is part of the 12 Months of Montessori Series.  For more posts and inspiration about the Montessori practical life curriculum, be sure to visit this month's posts.
Montessori Practical Life Checklist | Sugar, Glitter & Spice
Practical Life for an Older Child | Grace and Green Pastures
10 Ways to Encourage Family Chores this Summer | Christian Montessori Network
Practical Life at 2-Years-Old | The Kavanaugh Report


  1. Thanks for sharing! I have a shark girl too ;-)

  2. FUN! We don't have cable, but shark week is usually on Netflix. We are taking this time to learn a little more about sharks. My kids are going to love these ideas!

  3. We are full into Shark Week Mode here and I'll definitely be adding some of these activities.

  4. We love sharks, too! I love how you mixed it with practical life works! Great job!

  5. These are such fun activities, especially for boys who LOVE sharks! My favorite is the shark teeth. :)

  6. Your ability to theme activites and keep them completely functional never fails to amaze me. Thank you for sharing!

  7. This is an awesome theme for next week! Thank you so much for stopping by the Learn & Play Link Up! This post is featured on Christian Montessori Network this week.

  8. We are also huge shark fans and The Shark Week gets us very excited!!! We will definitely be taking a look at your Shark Unit too. Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. Shark Week is like a National Holiday at our house! We even decorate and our shelves are full of shark work. Thanks for sharing your awesome ideas! I'm off to the store to find some sharks to tag. God Bless you and yours. Enjoy the week!