BUILDING

QUICK START IDEAS
Use paint rollers to water paint on the sides of a building.
Draw pictures of houses and apartment buildings.
Make block towers.
Use large cardboard boxes to make stores, houses and car washes.
Build buildings using Lincoln Logs.
Act out the story of “The Three Little Pigs”
Match paint samples for color recognition.
Sort screws or nails by size.
Measure the length of a room, using a ruler or yard stick.
Climb short ladders.
Display pictures of real buildings or bridges in the Block Area.
 
BUILDING ART
CARDBOARD CASTLES
You will need a small cardboard box and four cardboard paper towel tubes
Cut the top off the box and cut out rectangular pieces around the top of the box to resemble the top of a castle.
Next, have your child help you glue the four tubes inside the four corners of the box. These should stick up taller than the sides of the castle creating four tourrets.
Cut out or draw on windows and doors for your castle.
Provide your child with toy animals and people to use with the castle and watch the fun begin!
 
BUILDING WITH PAPER SHAPES

Cut out colorful paper shapes for your children, including lots of squares and rectangles and arches.
Set out the paper shapes along with sheets of plain paper and some glue.
Encourage your child to make pretend buildings, bridges, etc. using the paper shapes.
 
BUILDING WITH WOOD SCRAPS
Ask for wood scraps at the lumber store and sand them for safety.
Set out the wood scraps along with some wood glue.
Encourage your child to use the scraps to build wood structures.
BUILDING WITH BLOCKS
BUILDING WITH BLOCKS
BUILDING TIP – When having children build with blocks, be sure that they are working on a flat, hard surface.
BUILDING HOUSES - Children can use kindergarten type blocks to build 3-dimentional houses and other buildings, or they can build large room layouts on the floor.
BUILDING BRIDGES, OVERPASSES, ROADS AND TUNNELS - Provide pictures on the wall of bridges, roads and tunnels and encourage your child to experiment building them using the blocks. Provide your children with cars and trucks to use when they build structures with blocks.
BUILDING WITH BOXES
BUILDING WITH BOXES
BUILDING TUNNELS – Provide your child with large cardboard boxes where two sides have been removed from each box. Show your child how to line the boxes up so that the empty sides are all in a line. Have your child crawl through the box tunnel when it is completed. Let your child decorate the sides of this tunnel with marking pens or paint.
BUILDING SKY SCRAPERS – For this activity, you will need four or five boxes. Help your child stack the boxes and tape them together if necessary. Let your child glue on some yellow rectangular paper shapes to represent windows and doors on his sky scraper.
BUILDING HOUSES – You will need a large appliance box for this project. Help your child cut out windows and doors for her house. Then let your child decorate her house with paint or marking pens. You could glue some material scraps over the windows for curtains and glue paper flowers beside the front door.
 
BUILDING WITH MANIPULATIVES
BUILDING WITH MANIPULATIVES
As you already know small manipulative toys such as the large Lego Blocks, Edublocks, Grid Blocks, Bristle Bocks, etc. are all great for building by small hands.
Children can use these manipulatives by stacking them to make towers, houses or whatever type of structure they wish to make.
 
HOUSE CONSTRUCTION

HOUSE CONSTRUCTION
When doing a unit on Building, you will want to get into the discussion with your child about how you build a house, what types of materials you use in building a house, and who helps to build a house.

TYPES OF HOUSE MATERIALS – Have your child discuss what types of houses he sees in your area. Are they built from wood, stucco, bricks, clay, mud, straw, etc?

CONSTRUCTION WORKERS – Building a house requires a number of people to complete the job. Visit a real job site if possible with your child or read a book about how a house is built. Discuss what a planner (or designer) does; a bull dozer driver?, a concrete layer, a framer (or carpenter), a plumber, an electrician and a painter.

CARPENTRY
HAMMERING

HAMMERING WITH NAILS – If you have a tree stump or are able to get one, they are great for beginning nail hammering. Provide your child with large headed nails and a small hammer. Supervise this activity at all times and have children keep unneeded fingers away from the hammer.

HAMMERING GOLF TEES – Set out some firm Styrofoam pieces and some wooden golf tees and a small hammer. Let your child practice hammering by tapping the golf tees into the Styrofoam.

 
SANDING
SAND PAPER VARIATIES - Set out a display for your child with different grades of sand paper. Use words like course and fine or rough and smooth. Make a matching game by cutting the sand paper sheets into four pieces. Mix up the pieces and have your child match the papers back up with all the rough papers in one pile and so on.

SANDING BLOCKS OF WOOD – Set out some blocks of wood and let your child use the sand paper rectangles to sand the wood.
 

SCREWING

SCREWING IN SOAP – An easy first experience with screwing screws is to give your child a large bar of soap and some large screws and a screw driver. Show you child how to press the screw down into the soap and then use the screw driver to screw it all the way into the soap.

SCREWING IN WOOD – To make the job of screwing easier for your child, first take a nail and hammer it a little ways into the wood. Then, take the nail out and have your child place the screw into the hole made by the nail. Then have him continue screwing the nail into the piece of wood.

UNSCREWING – Don’t forget to have your child practice unscrewing the screws that he has screwed into the soap or wood.

SIMPLE SCREWING GIFT – Have your child screw four screws in a line onto a small rectangle of wood. This can be used as a key holder, when hung on the wall.

 
GLUING

WOOD PIECES – As described in the Art section. Have your child glue sanded wood pieces together with glue to create interesting structures.

CRAFT STICKS - Have your child practice gluing craft sticks together. You can make nice picture frames by gluing four craft sticks together in a square.

SAND BOX CONSTURCTION
SAND TOWERS
You can make nice sand towers, by first collecting different sizes of cans.
Next, have your child fill the cans with sand and then pack with water.
Then, turn the largest can of sand up-side-down and remove the can.
Continue the with next largest can, and so on, until all the cans have been turned up-side-down on top of each other, to create a large sand tower.
 
SAND BOX CONSTRUCTION SITE
You can turn your sand box into a construction site by providing the following:
Place toy dump trucks, earth movers and other trucks into the sand box.
Provide smooth pieces of wood or cardboard to aid construction.
Encourage your child to dig basements, tunnels and roads and bridges.
BUILDING SNACKS
3-D STRUCTURES
Provide your child with graham squares and peanut butter for mortor.
Show your child how to attach two squares together by wedging them together with the peanut butter.
Encourage your child to make a four-sided house with an A-frame roof.
 
ONE-DIMENSIONAL HOUSES
Set out some square or rectangular crackers and some cheese triangles.
Have your child place crackers and cheese triangles on her plate to make house shapes.
BUILDING BOOKS
CHILDREN’S BOOK FAVORITES
Here are some books that go along with the building theme.
Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel – by Virginia L. Burton, Houghton Mifflin
The Little House – by Virginia L. Burton, Houghton Mifflin
Construction Zone – by Tana Hoban, Greenwillow Books
A Carpenter – by Tana Hoban, Greenwillow Books
BUILDING SONGS

OLD MAC DONALD BUILT A HOUSE
Tune:  “Old Mac Donald”

Old Mac Donald built a house,
E I E I O
And in his house he built a fireplace
E I E I O
With a brick, brick here and a brick, brick there.
Here a brick, there a brick, everywhere a brick, brick.
Old Mac Donald built a house,
E I E I O.
                                    Jean Warren
(Continue with other verses about other things he built into
his house, such as floors, windows and doors.)
(Or let your children take turns singing the song about themselves
building a house and what they would build in it.)
 

I’M A BUILDER
Tune:  “Frere Jacques”

I’m a builder,
I’m a builder
Watch me pound,
Hear my sound.
Tap, a tap, a tap, tap.
Tap, a tap, a tap, tap.
Hear me pound,
Hear me pound!
                        Jean Warren

 
THIS IS THE WAY WE BUILD A HOUSE
Tune:  “Mulberry Bush”

This is the way we build a house,
Build a house, build a house.
This is the way we build a house,
So early in the morning.

This is the way we hammer the nails,
Hammer the nails, hammer the nails.
This is the way we hammer the nails,
So early in the morning.

This is the way, we saw the wood,
Saw the wood, saw the wood.
This is the way we saw the wood,
So early in the morning.
                        Adapted Traditional
(Continue with other verses of other things you do to build the house.)
 

LONDON BRIDGES

Tune:  “London Bridges”

London Bridges falling down,
Falling down, falling down.
London bridges falling down,
So early in the morning.

This is the way we build it up,
Build it up, build it up.
This is the way we build it up,
So early in the morning.
                        Traditional

 

(Children face each other and hold hands up in an Arch and then let their hands fall down)

 

(Children put their hands back up)

 
SEE WHAT I BUILT TODAY!

Tune:  “Mary Had a Little Lamb”

I just love to hammer wood,
Hammer wood, hammer wood.
I just love to hammer wood,
See what I built today!

I just love to saw the wood,
Saw the wood, saw the wood.
I just love to saw the wood,
See what I built to day!

I just love to sand the wood,
Sand the wood, sand the wood.
I just love to sand the wood,
See what I built today!
                        Jean Warren