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Friday, August 1, 2014

Keep the Summer Fun Going During Back to School

How many of you are already back in school?  I have been enjoying summer vacation and wanting it to never end!  Here is a fun way to extend summer fun into back to school time

Pool Noodle Boats

All you need!  Pool noodle (mine was $2 at Kmart), foam sheets (Dollar tree), straws, whole punch, scissors, sharpie, serrated knife, cutting board 

1) Slice noodle into 1-2 inch pieces.
2) Cut triangles out of foam sheets (I got three triangles out of each sheet)
3) Write on foam triangles (possibilities are endless!)
4) Hole punch top and bottom of triangle, slip straw through and trim if needed.
5) Use scissors to poke small hole in noodle and push straw into it!
6) Add to kiddie pool or water table for back to school fun!

I was working with Kindergarten age children so I used numbers to 10, dot dice patterns and ten frames.  I could ask kids to find me the number 7 or 4 or ask them to match them up.  They also had a great time playing with the boats and I over heard a lot of good math talk!  Kids who were ready also did some ordering numbers using both the numerals and the dots.

The best part is that this can easily be adapted!  If you have kids who are ready for bigger numbers, go for it!  You could put double digit numerals on some and sketches of base 10 pieces that match those numbers on others.  You could put fractions on some and pictures of fractions on others.  

These could also be used for literacy!  Imagine matching capital letters to lowercase ones!  

What other ideas do you have for these fun boats?  Please respond in the comments below or leave a comment on Facebook!


  1. When I was cleaning out the garage the other day, I almost threw out my daughter's old noodles from when she was a kid. I'm glad I didn't! My second graders will love the sailboats, and I can think of a gazillion things to put on the sails to turn it into a learning activity!

    Sally from Elementary Matters

  2. Thanks so much for this idea!! I could see using this little boats as a number sense sort in my small groups. It would be fun to use a different type of manipulative.
    Love it!
    Curious Firsties