Welcome to your free tools and machines preschool lesson plans! We’ve put together loads of ideas for a Tools & Machines preschool theme, including literacy ideas, art and sensory exploration, plus playful learning and STEM ideas. Read on and check out these awesome tools and machine learning ideas…you’ll find the free download at the end of this post!
Free Tools & Machines Activities for Preschoolers
As the only girl in a family with 4 boys, I learned and loved using tools from a young age! My father was an auto mechanic and part-time carpenter, so you can probably imagine what our garage looked like. There were always projects going on that involved power tools, noisy machines, and the smell of sawdust. I can still remember my childhood desk and hutch that my dad hand-built for me based on my preferences (and very poor hand-drawn rendering). I was SO proud of that desk and felt the love and energy that he poured into it, just for me.
There is something magical about spending time with tools, getting your hands dirty, and beaming with pride at the concoction that you created.
Preschoolers get that same sense of joy when they use the toy hammer to hit the “nail” into the foam or the saw as they build you something special. They will use a variety of skills with this free preschool tool theme!
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FAQ About a Tools & Machines Preschool Theme
You may have a few questions about teaching this preschool theme! Check out these frequently asked questions for how to teach your preschoolers about Tools & Machines.
Learning about tools is not only interesting but also highlights the work of community helpers in our cities and neighborhoods. Learning about construction workers and their jobs helps our preschoolers learn about the important roles these workers play in our community.
A pretend tool set is a great way to introduce tools to your students. They can use the toy hammer to “nail” golf tees into styrofoam to make letters or shapes. Children also learn about the importance of safety when using tools in dramatic play.
Important Info about these Tools & Machines Lesson Plans
These lesson plans for preschoolers are just one theme in a set of over 40 that will become a part of my free Learn At Home Preschool Lesson Plans.
The Learn at Home Preschool Lesson Plans are a set of free lesson plans you can use to teach your preschooler at home.
Each set of lesson plans is centered around a weekly theme and includes a minimum of 16 activities that can be done throughout the week. They are designed to be done at home with parents, but many preschool teachers are using these lesson plans, too!
Just glance over the lessons each day, gather the very few materials needed, and you’re ready to go!
All the preschool learning activities are quick and easy to set up, requiring very little (if any at all) prep and only require the most basic of household materials. This makes them especially easy for parents to implement…and this makes preschool teachers happy, too!
These activities also work wonderfully in the classroom, and if you’re a preschool teacher who is remotely teaching you can send these lesson plans to your student’s parents.
Engaging Preschool Activities for a Tools & Machines Theme
We have hand-selected the most fun and interesting FREE activities for a tools and machine preschool theme! Your preschoolers will be developing fine motor skills, learning to work as a team, and enjoying a hands-on STEM activity that is loads of fun.
Literacy Activities for a Tools & Machines Preschool Theme
Chalk and Rocks Letter Fun – Grab some chalk and head outdoors! If that’s not possible, you can certainly use black paper and prepare rocks ahead of time. Invite your preschooler to gather rocks, acorns, or other nature-based items. Write a few letters in chalk on the sidewalk and invite your preschooler to make the letter by lining up the rocks on top of the letter. Invite your child to practice writing the letters with chalk as well. Practice saying those letter sounds and letter matching too!
Tool School – Go to YouTube and listen to the story, Tool School by Joan Holub. This book is all about working with your peers and cooperation. Invite your child to imagine what would happen if none of the tools worked together? Do you think they would be able to build the toolbox… or anything? Invite your preschooler to share why cooperation is always important.
Don’t Forget Picture Books!
One of the best ways to teach preschoolers about any theme is by hand-selecting the highest quality picture books! We put together this list of books for a tools & machines theme.
Math and Science Activities for a Tools & Machines Theme in Preschool
Loose Parts Sort and Count – Grab some loose parts (nuts, screws, beads, rocks, popsicle sticks, etc.) and invite your preschooler to sort in their own way. Invite them to count how many groups they created and share their sorting rule (I sorted this because…).
Count the Golf Tee Hammering – Use up that Styrofoam from your packages with this fine motor and math activity. Invite your preschooler to place a certain number of golf tees in the Styrofoam and use the toy hammer to pound it in! Lining up all those pegs and hammering the head of the tee builds fine motor skills and visual discrimination skills too!
Create a Winding Bucket – With paper towel rolls and some yarn, you can make your own winding bucket to dip into the well! This preschool science activity is so engaging and uses simple materials, so it’s a perfect STEM process.
Playful Preschool Learning Activities for a Tools & Machines Theme
Rock Paper Scissors – Teach your preschooler how to play rock, paper, scissors. Provide practice by playing multiple times. Encourage your preschooler to use that game to solve problems with a friend or decide who gets to go first in a game.
Simple Machines Coloring Pages – Invite your preschoolers to color some simple machines like pulleys and levers. How might these machines be helpful in daily life? How do these machines help at a construction site?
Play Charades – Print these picture-based charade cards and invite the whole family to play. Remember, you can only use your body to model what’s on the card (no talking) so this is a true challenge for a preschooler!
Social-Emotional Activities for a Tools & Machines Preschool Theme
Self Regulation Toolkit – Waiting can be very difficult for toddlers and preschoolers. Invite your preschooler to create a toolkit with items that can help regulate their emotions about waiting and help to entertain themselves. Invite your preschooler to choose items like coloring pages or stickers, small toys, books, magnetic letters or puzzles, and items that don’t make a lot of noise or contain a ton of pieces. Encourage your child to be responsible for bringing it when going somewhere where they may need to entertain themselves like a restaurant or the doctor’s office.
Calming Toolbox – Create a calming toolbox or a list together to use when emotions are running high, and your child needs a way to settle their big feelings. You can create a list of things to do when you are feeling angry or frustrated, like read a book, throw a ball, hug a stuffed animal, or even close your door to be alone. Adding in some items like a stress ball or a book about emotions can help your child regulate their feelings more independently.
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Just Plain Fun Tools & Machines Activities for Preschoolers
Tool Match-Up– Grab some of your preschooler’s toy tools and paper and a black marker. Trace around the tools and invite your preschooler to match them up. This is great for spatial awareness and such a fun tool activity for preschoolers!
Painting with Tools – This open-ended art activity is great for helping preschoolers explore shapes and interact with colorful paint. Just need a piece of paper, colored tempera paint, and some toy tools.
Tool Treasure Hunt – Place toy tools around the room and invite your preschooler to find the tools. Use the tool terms and positional words to help your preschooler. “I see a wrench under the chair. I see the hammer on the windowsill.” Or place the tools in a sensory bin with dried black beans and some construction vehicles and encourage your preschooler to load the beans and use different tools at the same time!
Get Online Activities for a Tools & Machines Theme
Online Story – Go to YouTube and listen to the story, I Love Tools by Philemon Sturges. After listening, discuss with your preschooler: How many different kinds of tools were in that story? Let’s go back and count. What tools have you used before? What new tools would you like to use? Can you think of any other tools that were not in this story that a construction worker might use?
Learn Tools for Kids Song and Video– Learn all the tool names and purposes with this fun song and video!
Finger Family Tools – Sing along to this catchy and familiar rhyme adapted to learn about tools!
Make Your Tools & Machines Theme Even Better!
Sometimes (not always), what turns a great preschool theme into an exceptional one is having some extra special materials specific to that theme. These are some of the Tools & Machines toys and activity kits I like to use with my preschoolers.
Get Your Free Tools & Machines Lesson Plans Here
Want to include these Tools & Machines activities in your lesson plans? Ready to grab your free printable lesson plans with all these Tools & Machines theme activities for preschoolers?!
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I am an educator, book enthusiast, and a stay at home momma to two precious and long-awaited littles. My degree is in Early Childhood Education and Curriculum and Instruction and I have spent the last 15 years working with young children. I feel very fortunate to have this time to watch my babies grow and I can’t wait to share my passion for learning and reading with you!