Melissa and DougFor over 25 years, Melissa and Doug have provided preschoolers with delightful play opportunities through innovative designs that challenge creativity in young kids.  Melissa and Doug proudly promote play in the preschool years through products that successfully engage children in playful activities.

We love Melissa and Doug products and use their highly crafted items in our classroom at home on a daily basis!  Did you know that learning can also be extended from the basic products to incorporate:  early literacy, early math, social-emotional development, and fine motor-skills development?  As parents, caregivers, and teachers we ask you to consider “thinking outside the box” when considering the BEST gifts for your preschooler this Christmas!

The Pizza Party set from Melissa and Doug is one of our favorites!  Below you will find suggestions on how to use the Pizza Party set in ways that extend play into playful learning!

pizza party

What’s your Favorite Pizza Topping? Graph – Favorite Pizza Graph

Create a class (or family) graph of each person’s favorite pizza toppings.

Materials needed:
Melissa and Doug Pizza Party Set
Favorite Pizza Topping Graph.pdf (linked above)

Each student can use the Melissa and Doug toppings pieces from the Pizza Party Set to indicate which topping they like the best!

Melissa and Doug Pizza Party Set 002

Pizza Slices Math Activity

Materials needed: – Pizza Math

Pizza Slices.pdf (linked above)
Melissa and Doug Pizza Slices from the Pizza Party Set

Invite the children to count the number of pizza slices on the printable linked above.  The slices from the Melissa and Doug Pizza Party set can be used as a hands-on manipulative to aid the children with basic counting skills.  Remind the children to count out loud as they use the pizza slices from the Pizza Party set for one-to-one correspondence.

We have 3 of the Melissa and Doug Pizza Party sets in our own classroom.  Our kids LOVE the pizza activities and ask to do them over and over.  It is amazing to watch young children truly engaged in learning and play!

Melissa and Doug Pizza Party Set 001My Favorite Pizza Writing Activity – Favorite Pizza Writing Activity

What is your favorite kind of pizza? Use this activity to describe your ideal pizza.

Materials needed:
My Favorite Pizza Writing Activity.pdf (linked above)
Pencils (regular or colored)
Melissa and Doug Pizza Party Set

Print off one copy of the My Favorite Pizza Writing Activity.pdf for each student. There are two pages to this activity. Page 1 has most of the text already written on the page. Page 2 is intended for children to write/copy/stamp the words on their own.

Next, invite the children use the toppings from the Melissa and Doug Pizza Party Set to decorate the pizza at the top of the page.  The children can then use pencils (regular or colored) to copy or write about the pizzas on the lines provided. (Note for pre-writing – Melissa and Doug have a great Alphabet Stamp Set !)

Extension idea: If you have several children doing this activity in the classroom, compile and bind the pages together to create a class book of all the favorite pizzas.

Pizza Party Dramatic Play Center

Set up an area at home or in the classroom where the children can create, bake, and even deliver delicious play pizzas to their peers or other family members.  Some materials might include:  pizza boxes (ask a local restaurant as some are happy to provide them free of charge for use with children), plates, utensils, aprons, oven mitts, chef hats, several Pizza Party Sets from Melissa and Doug, a play kitchen (or table covered with a blanket to resemble an oven), riding toys to “deliver” the pizzas, and tables where customers can “eat.”

Books to enjoy about PIZZA!

1. Pete’s a Pizza by William Steig
2. The Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza by Philemon Sturges
3. Pizza Counting by Christina Dobson
4. Let’s Make Pizza by Mary Hill
5. Hi Pizza Man! by Virginia Walter
6. Sam’s Pizza by David Pelham

Young children love PIZZA!   We believe that by inviting children to playful learning with integrated daily activities, we can help young children have the best start possible!  To consider other great toys that can promote learning through play this Christmas, visit Melissa and Doug!

By admin

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