Welcome to Paula's Preschool and Kindergarten! My class blog is the place I share information about some of the fun learning activities we are doing at school. I hope to provide parents with insight into what we are doing, and why, and to share ideas with other early childhood educators. Please don't use the photos or text of this blog without permission, but please do use any ideas you find useful. Thank you for stopping by!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

A Quick and Free Sorting Center

True confession #1: I have a sweet tooth, and indulge myself with an altoid or 2 (possibly 3 or 4) when I'm driving.  So does my son.  Between us, we've accumulated a few of the awesome hinged tins that the breath mints come in. 

True confession #2: Since I'm using the empty containers for a learning activity, I can justify the candies... um, I mean breath mints.  I'm not having those for myself, it's for the children!

See?  Each empty tin makes a good place to sort 2 items, and 4 empty tins means 8 places to sort things.

My kiddos have always loved teeny tiny things - I recently blogged about our teeny tiny notebooks , and I've often mentioned our sensory bins full of all manner of items for the children to manipulate.  This tiny activity is one of my favorites, because it's a super easy, quick, FREE math center that engages young children for a long time!

As you can see, all I did was put a variety of seasonal items into a pretty dish, and put out the empty altoid tins with it.  In this case I've included plastic jewels, pompons, beads, jingle bells, and some small pictures.  I also like offering foam shapes, they usually come in a container with 6-10 different shapes, which are also usually 6-8 different colors, so we can sort by shape or by color.

(The pictures I used in this sorting tray are from a Christmas counting center that I just finished putting together, which is available in my TeachersPayTeachers store.)

One of the best things about this kind of sorting activity, is that you probably already have things on hand that the children can sort, and those tins?  You can use them over and over again, with any theme you want.  It's almost enough to make me eat more altoids! ;-) 


  1. Great idea. Those tins are great. I never thought about using them for sorting.✿April✿
    Grade School Giggles

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