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Activities for Early Childhood

Castaldo's Corner


Educator Nancy Castaldo shares timely activities throughout the school year for engaging young children in discovery and learning. Each link below takes you to a hands-on activity and ideas for extending that activity.

Make a Weather Calendar
Here's a way to explore the changing seasons with your students.

Leaf Match Game
Test students' matching skills with this fun game.

Nancy F. Castaldo is the author of many books packed with inspiring ideas for childhood discovery and learning. In addition to the three titles above, Nancy has written activity guides for teaching children ages 6 to 9 about the ocean, rainforests, deserts, and rivers. All of these titles are published by Chicago Review Press.

Click here to learn about these books and others by Nancy Castaldo.

Shadow Pictures
Explore shadows and how they seem to change throughout the day.

Going Batty!
A fun art project introduces your students to bats.

Almost Batik
Sometimes making art means using unusual materials.

My Special Letters
Explore "initial" consonant sounds by making a special book.

Reindeer Games
An easy way for students to draw a reindeer using their own hands.

Students create their own winter-wonderland snow globes.

Basket "Snow" Ball
This basketball game can be played indoors or outdoors.

Layer-Up Relay
Hit the closet for this fun wintertime relay.

Ice Floe Game
Students pretend they are floating on the Arctic Ocean with their friends.

Scratch-and-Sniff Painting
Create a painting of fruit that looks great and smells good too.

Help Build a Bird Nest
An easy way for kids to contribute to birds' nests in their neighborhoods.

Backwards Day Party
Kids are sure to have a giggling good time on Backwards Day!

Meet a Tree
Here's an opportunity to get to know a tree personally.

Puddle Walk
Outdoor learning for days that are wet and drippy.

Make Your Own Leaf Book
A nice way for students to remember their leafing expeditions.

Silly Story Circle
Share a silly story with your friends and see who has the last word.

About the Author

A native of New York's Hudson Valley, Nancy Castaldo earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Marymount College and a Master of Arts from the State University of New York. As an environmental educator, author, and Girl Scout volunteer and board member, Castaldo has led numerous children's workshops. Her school programs include workshops on ocean creatures and other nature topics, creative writing, and pizza making/Italy. She has conducted programs at the Boston Children's Museum, Atlanta Zoo, and Tennessee Aquarium. Castaldo's books include River Wild: An Activity Guide to North American Rivers; Oceans: An Activity Guide for Ages 6-9; Deserts: An Activity Guide for Ages 6-9; ; and Deserts: An Activity Guide for Ages 6-9. She is also author of a historical-fiction picture book, Pizza for the Queen. To learn more about Nancy and her books, check out her Web site, www.nancycastaldo.com.