Looking for a fun activity for the first day of school? Or an easy activity to introduce face masks in the classroom setting? This design-a-face-mask activity is just right for both toddlers and preschoolers.
Easy Face Mask Activity for the First Day of Preschool
Back-to-school vibes have been in the air for a while now. All summer it seems. And we are all feeling the uncertainty.
What will preschool look like this fall?
As a teacher, what new protocol must you follow to keep your students safe? As a parent, will your child be able to have the preschool experience you have always wanted for them?
As a veteran preschool teacher myself, I think I can answer for all preschool teachers…we sure hope so! And as an experienced parent, I would answer the same way.
Of course we hope our preschoolers will be safe and also have a traditional and nurturing preschool experience.
While we may not know exactly what the future holds, one thing we all know is that preschool this fall is going to feel just a little bit different than it has in the past. Whether you’re a preschool teacher who has to wear a face mask and give air high fives, or if you are lucky enough to still have sensory bins and playdough, you can bet that there will be a lot more discussion on what germs are and how they spread.
That’s why I thought a face mask activity would be a fun first-day-of-preschool activity for this fall. (See all my fall themed activities here). Even if your students are not required to wear face coverings, this mask activity is a fun way to start off the new school year when times are a little…interesting.
You can add this into your first-day-of-preschool activities like you do your hand-washing routines and when you talk about (for the first time ever) why we aren’t sharing with others this year.
Design-a-Face-Mask Activity for Preschoolers
Not all preschools may be requiring students to wear masks, but probably all preschoolers have parents or siblings who wear face masks to prevent the spread of germs.
This design-a-face-mask activity is fun for the first day of preschool when you start teaching all the new safety protocol…such as why you are wearing a mask.
- free printable face mask (found at the end of this post)
- do-a-dot markers
Be sure to read the entire post for all the modifications and extensions for this single activity. There are loads of ways you can use this in your back-to-school activities in preschool.
How to Use This Face Mask Printable
This back-to-school activity comes with a printable face mask and a die. The die has color splatters on each side.
Roll the die and identify the color splatter, and use a do-a-dot marker to make the corresponding color dot on the mask.
Preschoolers and toddlers may want to just stamp and stamp after they roll the die. Or they may want to stamp only once. Either way is ok.
You can add a counting component by offering a numeral die for the child to roll at the same time. Then have your preschooler identify both the number and the color, and have him add the same number of dots onto his mask.
See my Counting Lesson Plans here.
This is a fun way to quickly learn which preschoolers are starting the year knowing all their colors, and which preschoolers need a little more work on matching and identifying colors. And if you use a numeral die, it’s also an easy way to informally assess one-to-one correspondence and number identification skills.
Be sure to get all my free color learning printables and counting printables at the end of this post, as well as your free printable face mask.
More Printables to Teach Colors
More Printables to Teach Counting
Ways to Modify or Extend This Activity
There are many ways to use this printable in your classroom. With a more traditional preschool printable, I share multiple ways to teach content with the same printable. This face mask printable is a little different, but here are some ideas for how to use this in your classroom.
Please note: this printable is not a real mask, and it is important to share that with your students. A paper mask does not replace an over-the-counter medical face mask. Nor does it replace a reusable and washable face mask.
This face mask printable is just for fun.
- If you don’t have access to dot markers, you can use any variety of art materials to decorate the printable mask. Try dot stickers or squares of construction paper. Even just markers and crayons.
- Teachers in masks aren’t scary! Make mask wearing fun by inviting your preschoolers to decorate the printable. Use this time as an opportunity to explain why you are wearing a mask.
- Reusable masks come in all sorts of shapes and patterns. Preschoolers might see people they know, or people who are new to them (like their preschool teacher) wearing a different mask. That’s ok! It’s still the same person underneath.
- Use this mask as a way to teach children how to not share germs. Sharing is a good thing, but not when we are sharing germs. You may also pair this activity with an explanation of why sharing preschool materials isn’t allowed anymore. 🙁
- Use this mask activity to encourage discussions about what kinds of things we can do to stay healthy and not get sick. You might consider teaching when and how to properly wash hands, teaching not to touch faces, to cover our coughs and sneezes, etc.
More Information About Mask Wearing
Wearing face masks to prevent the spread of disease can be hard for young children to understand, and because they are not always comfortable, children can give a lot of pushback. Remember to be compassionate and patient with your preschoolers.
Here are some highly-rated picture books that will help.
In addition, if your preschool is opening in any way that is “less traditional” than pre-COVID, then it’s also a good idea to prepare yourself as a teacher or parent about mask wearing and disease prevention.
The following links will take you to the Center of Disease Control website and also include free printables.
Click here for more information on mask wearing.
Click here for more information about social distancing.
Click here for more information about keeping kids healthy.
Get Your Printable Mask Below
Think this design-a-mask activity would be fun to add to your first-day-of-preschool activities? You can grab your own copy of the mask below.
I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.
This is a thoughtful activity especially for programs who are required for children to wear face masks. Thanks for creating.
THANK YOU SO MUCH! I am happy to be teaching preschool again even during covid times!