Animal Sorting Game

various farm animals
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Sorting is an important early math skill for your preschoolers to learn. The neat thing is, your child or student probably practices this skill naturally during play - separating fruits and veggies while pretend cooking, lining up the red blocks, creating zoo habitats for different animals, etc. While intrinsic in creative play, teacher-directed encounters with sorting are also important. Jolanthe, creator of the blog Homeschool Creations, offers a fun animal sorting game that your students are sure to connect with!

Sorting Applications

Jolanthe's original intention was for the printables to be used to create a file folder game. By pasting a different animal habitat heading at the top of each folder section and adding Velcro dots to both the pages and animal cards, students can be encouraged to sort the animal cards by habitat (i.e. the cow belongs on the farm, the octopus belongs in the ocean, etc.). This design is super practical, easy-to-store, and provides students with unlimited individual sorting practice. However, Jolanthe's adorable printables can have several other applications as well! Consider the following activities:

  • Add a fun twist to the sorting exercise by inviting students to sort based on preference or experience: like/dislike, animals they've seen/not seen, etc.
  • Add a counting component to the activity by having students sort the animals by number of legs. This will certainly result in interesting conversation about the differences between ocean dwelling animals and land dwelling animals.
  • Once students have sorted the animals in their appropriate habitats, have them order each group from largest to smallest. You'll need to do some research beforehand (e.g. find out the average weight of each species), but students will certainly enjoy learning about each animal. Note: Put each animal's size in perspective (e.g. an elephant weights this many preschoolers, etc.).
  • Create a matching component by printing two sets of animal cards, cutting both sets apart, and playing a traditional memory game by turning them all face down on a flat surface or by leaving one set of cards intact (as a 'game board' of sorts) and having students match individual animal cards to their place on the game board.

With such versatility, Jolanthe's animal sorting printable will perfectly compliment your classroom learning objectives! Be sure to visit her site for the download!

Happy Sorting!