Sharing is a difficult concept for young kids to grasp. This social skill is a fundament to early friendships and engaging in play with peers. One of my favorite ways to discuss (and practice) sharing with kids, is through play and taking turns. This activity based on the book, Should I Share My Ice Cream? (An Elephant and Piggie Book) by Mo Willems, promotes fine motor skills and is a sharing game that opens the opportunity for conversation and fun!
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How to Make the Sharing Game
In the book, elephant struggles with deciding whether or not he should share his ice cream with his best friend piggie. This is a dilemma that my kids can really relate to, and they really enjoyed playing with and working through the concept in this sharing game.
What you need:
- gallon sized ziplock bag
- water beads (we used 2 colors)
- masking tape
- permanent marker
What to do:
- Prep the water beads according to the packing, soaking them overnight or for a few hours until ready for use.
- Using the stapler, make two lines of staples, splitting the bag in thirds, extending about 3/4 way up the bag.
- Draw ice cream cones with a permanent marker on the outside columns of the bag.
- Fill the center column with water beads.
How to play:
Have your child move the water beads with their fingers (fine motor practice) up the center column and then into the ice cream cones. If you are using the book, one ice cream can be for elephant and one for piggie. Ask your children questions like “who has more/less?”, “how can we make them even?”, “how does it feel to share your ice cream?”. My kids played with it together, sharing the space and filling each other’s ice cream cones and taking turns. We would practice filling up one side and keeping the other empty, and talk about how it would feel if someone else had all of the ice cream and we had none.
This was a great lesson in empathy, talking about feelings, and sharing. It was also ice-cream themed, which my kids loved. 🙂
We would love to see pictures of your spin on the idea, or of you trying it for yourself! This post is part of the virtual book club for kids, be sure to join (for free) to play along with us! Check out some more activities from the book club below.
More friendship and ice cream themed activities from the VBC:
- Spelling Names Ice Cream Center – Still Playing School
- Learning about our friends – Rainy Day Mum
- Kind Words Sensory Lesson – Preschool Powol Packets
- Listening Games with Elephant and Piggie – Inspiration Laboratories
- Cupcake Cones – Kori at Home
- Paper Tube Friendship Bracelets – Clare’s Little Tots
- How to Make a Colour Mixing Ice Cream – Peakle Pie
- Preschool Pencil Control – CraftCreateCalm
- How to Make Happy Faces in a Sand Tray -Big Owl Little Owl Witty Hoots
- Pass the Ice Cream Sharing Activity for Preschoolers – Sunny Day Family
- Gross Motor Core Strengthening Friendship Activity for a Group – Kara Carrero
- Friendship Ice Cream Throw – Adventures of Adam
- Build 2D and 3D ice cream cones with friends – Kara Carrero
- Piggie and Elephant Shapes Sharing Activity – Mosswood Connections