These activities for 4 year olds provide for tons of learning and self-expression through play. 4 year olds are inquisitive and independent, and are learning at a rapid pace. From grasping numbers and letters to developing deep relationships with peers, learning is fun at this age, and experiencing all of this through play is ideal.
Below are plenty of ideas for learning activities for 4 year olds to do at home or in school!
What are 4 Year Olds Learning?
Four year olds are learning so much! Learning activities for 4 year olds include counting, pre-reading, emotional development and more. This age group is learning:
- how to count objects
- counting by memory
- understanding size and spatial relationships
- expanding vocabulary by using new words
- coordinating movement to jump, spin, skip and more
- learning letter sounds
- making inferences and predictions about what will happen
- beginning to form letters in writing
How to Play with a 4 Year Old
There are so many really fun ways to play with this age group. As an older preschooler, 4 year olds are able to engage in dramatic and fantasy play, and love exploring creative thinking. Some really fun ways to play are by:
- acting out favorite stories
- playing ‘house’
- opening a pretend restaurant
- have races outside
- play board or card games
- have a dance party
- play Red Light, Green Light or Simon Says
- dig for worms
- plant vegetables
Fun Activities for 4 Year Olds
Below are categories for 4 year old activities, including: learning activities, arts and crafts, sensory play, and games.
These are fun activities to do at home to learn through play and bond together, or to do in the classroom.
Learning Activities for 4 Year Olds
Pre-reading activities help children learn that which is essential to have in their toolbox before any formal reading education. These activities help children identify letters and make their sounds through play and hands-on activities.
Snowball Sight Words on a Sticky Table (pictured)
See and Spell with Toy Train Cars (pictured)
Beginning Sounds Match // You’ve Got this Math (pictured)
Free Dinosaur Printables // Living Montessori Now (pictured)
We’re Going on a Word Hunt // Walking by the Way (pictured)
DIY Tile Letter Magnets // Artsy Momma
Sight Word Splat // Views From a Step Stool
Valentines Day Literacy Activity // Sparkling Buds
Pre-handwriting activities engage the fine motor skills necessary to hold a pencil. Pincer grasp can be developed without holding a pen or pencil at all! These activities might include threading or stringing, pinching playdough, sorting with tweezers, and more!
Button Practice Felt Flowers // Twitchetts (pictured)
Teddy Bear Bread // Messy Little Monster (pictured)
Felt Rocket Name Puzzle // Teach Me Mommy (pictured)
Color Matching for Kids with Pom Pom Flowers // The Moments at Home (pictured)
Kids Fun Fine Motor Weaving // J Daniel 4’s Mom (pictured)
Sandbox Writing // Walking by the Way (pictured)
Fine Motor Skills: Rainbow Rice in a Jar // KC Edventures (pictured)
DIY Twig Art // Twitchetts (pictured)
Simple Sewing Busy Bag // The Chaos and The Clutter
Google Eye Envelope Alien Busy Bag // Crafty Kids at Home
Coin Sorting // Rhythms of Play
STEM Activities for 4 Year Olds
STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math. These STEM activities for 4 year olds will encourage children to make inferences and think critically, and to sort, count and organize materials while having fun!
DIY Worm Farm (pictured)
Fizzing Fireworks Painting (pictured)
Basic Math with Fall Leaves (pictured)
Acorn Fine Motor Counting (pictured)
Monster Truck Counting Printables // Artsy Momma (pictured)
Making Friendship Ice Cream // Mama Smiles
Popsicle Stick Shape Building Magnets // Planning Playtime
Counting Raindrops: 1-10 Math Printable // Schooltime Snippets
Love Heart Number Line // Adventures and Play
STEM Activity for Kids: Valentine Tower // Preschool Powol Packets
Build Magnetic Robots // Adventure in a Box (pictured)
Pete the Cat Math Game // Buggy and Buddy (pictured)
Counting with Marbles and Bath Mats // Creative Playhouse (pictured)
Pipes and Water Play // Moms and Crafters (pictured)
Montessori Nature Tray // Living Montessori Now (pictured)
Math Busy Bag // The Chaos and The Clutter (pictured)
Penguin Dice Addition Game // Adventures and Play
Exploring Colors with Baking Soda and Vinegar // Buggy and Buddy
Counting With Playdough // Creative Playhouse
How to Put Together a Portable Tinker Box // Little Worlds Big Adventures
Counting Caterpillar Busy Bag // Powerful Mothering
Sensory Activities for 4 Year Olds
Sensory play is essential to early learning. Sensory activities develop the vocabulary as children describe their experiences. It develops fine motor skills that are essential to early handwriting. Is is calming and can help regulate emotions. Sensory play is wonderful for busy 4 year olds eager to explore their environment!
Arctic Small World Play (pictured)
Shark Week Sensory Play (pictured)
Dinosaur Swamp Sensory Bin // Mommy’s Bundle (pictured)
Jump and Wash! Dinosaur Sensory Play // Little Worlds Big Adventures (pictured)
Soft Sheep Sensory and Science Discovery // Simple at Home
Letter Sensory Bin // Views From a Step Stool
Flower Arranging Montessori Practical Life Kids Activity // Rhythms of Play
Arts & Craft Activities for 4 Year Olds
Arts and craft activities for 4 year olds help encourage self-expression. Children are able to express their creativity and their individualism while developing scissor skills, color mixing, cause and effect and more!
Clothespin and Cottonball Cloud Painting (pictured)
Coffee Filter Butterfly Magnets (pictured)
Superhero Puppet Craft // Messy Little Monster (pictured)
Exploring Symmetry with Art // Crafty Kids at Home (pictured)
Easy Bubble Art Activity // Mommy’s Bundle
Draw the Missing Half // Adventure in a Box
Cut it Out! Art Inspired by Ohara // Homebound But Hopeful
Busy Bee Headband Craft // Simple at Home
4 year olds love to play games! At this age, teamwork is attainable and gross motor activities are important for engaging in daily activities. This list includes indoor activities for 4 year olds as well as outdoor fun with this age group.
Butterfly File Folder Games Printable (pictured)
Pretend Play Busy Bags // Lalymom (pictured)
Cup Twisting Fine Motor Games // Lalymom (pictured)
DIY Car Magnets Craft // Moms and Crafters (pictured)
Spiderweb Obstacle Course // Mama Smiles (pictured)
Hit the Cardboard Road // Non Toy Gifts (pictured)
DIY Cardboard Car Wash // Non Toy Gifts (pictured)
DIY Cardboard Car Track // Planning Playtime
Playground Scavenger Hunt // KC Edventures
I Spy in Ice // Sparkling Buds
A Pox on Your House // Homebound But Hopeful
Shapes, Counting and Colors Busy Bag // Powerful Mothering
Have so much fun playing and learning with your 4 year old! These activities will be sure to help kids learn through play, and fun!
More Activity Lists for 4 Year Olds
Want ideas for other ages?