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Show and Tell Ideas from A to Z {+ Creative Hints}

Show and Tell Ideas from A to Z {+ Creative Hints} | Columbia SC Moms BlogWhen Show and Tell was first created, it was traditionally used in elementary grades to teach children the art of public speaking. The child held the object and told its story or, at the very least, described it in-depth.

I think this is brilliant.

Somehow over the years this activity has trickled down to the kindergarten and preschool level, and while it’s a great practice to get your child involved in learning and understanding what letter things start with, it can be tough to find items that fit the bill (U or X anyone?). Here are some creative ideas and hints to keep Show and Tell fun … and your child learning!

Creative Hints

If you have your child describe the object using several of the five senses, you can totally get creative on the letters. First and foremost, make sure they know what COLOR it is. Have a distinctive SHAPE. (Preschool teachers love colors and shapes). Scratch and sniff stuff? Choose a FOOD scent. They’ll want to taste it, too.

Teachers often ask students the journalist’s five W’s. Have your son or daughter ready.

  1. What is this called?
  2. Who gave it to you?
  3. When do you use it?
  4. Where do you use it?
  5. Why do you like it?
  6. BONUS POINTS: How does it work?

More Hints Before You Start

–> For any scent listed, consider stocking up on some potpourri or car air fresheners that match
–> For any flavor listed, consider jelly beans or that striped stick candy
–> For any color mentioned, consider stashing a big box of Crayolas or a bag of marbles 

Show and Tell Ideas from A to Z

A IS FOR

  • Art (any work of art, which is quite a broad range and open to varied interpretation)
  • Apple (or anything apple scented/flavored)
  • Aquamarine or Army green
  • Army men

B IS FOR

  • Balloon (find closest store with helium services for an extra special touch)
  • Burnt orange (heck, a burned anything! a baggie of a few burned matches or candles you lit and extinguished together before school works great for “telling about”)
  • Book (any book you like!)
  • Bandaids (everyone will want one)

C IS FOR

  • Candy (to share!)
  • Cherry or Cinnamon (scents)
  • Chartreuse (that’s a color!)
  • Cold ice pack (pack in thermos or lunch bag)
  • Clothes (favorite doll clothes)
  • Cotton balls (a bag, the teacher can then use them for gluing cloud pictures)

D IS FOR

  • Dandelion bouquet
  • Dog (stuffed or a photo of your pet)
  • Dum-dum suckers
  • Doughnut holes
  • Driver’s license (here, or google blank kids’ templates, so fun!) 
  • Dirt (really desperate? Grab a ziploc baggie or amason jar, have junior fill with dirt from the yard – the oohs and ahhs will commence at SHOW AND TELL time)

E IS FOR

  • Ear muffs (earphones, ear plugs – swim team members, anyone?)
  • Earrings (with instructions to not share) 
  • Easter anything (plastic eggs, candy, basket, bunny, book – It does not matter what season week E is in. It is a more special SHOW AND TELL item if it’s out of season. No one else will do it!)
  • Eye glasses (think photo booth prop or sunglasses)
  • Earth

F IS FOR 

  • Family/Best Friend (framed photo!)
  • Fruit (Loops, Roll Ups, etc count, too!)
  • Favorite —- (yeah, ANYTHING)
  • Fortune cookie (if you prepare the day before! We have to get take-out tonight, dear, “It’s F WEEK.”)

G IS FOR

  • Green or Gray
  • Grass (plant quick growing grass seeds in a cup on Monday for sprouts by Friday!)
  • Grandparent (live visit or photo or SKYPE call prearranged!)
  • Gummy (worms, bears … or just chewing gum)
  • Glow sticks (Dollar Store doesn’t open before school hours!)
  • Gingerbread Men (or the book)
  • Grape (scent!) 
  • Goodnight, Gorilla or Goodnight Moon

H IS FOR

  • Helium balloon
  • Hat (the possibilities!) 
  • Hero (superhero figurine or costume)
  • Healthy snack (to share?) 
  • Horton Hears a Who

I IS FOR

  • Indigo (color)
  • Icicle (Christmas decorations)
  • Ice tray (just an empty plastic one, most children don’t know what they are due to ice makers now)
  • Insect  (plastic ones or ladybug or lightening bugs if you’ve caught one earlier)
  • I AM...” book of a favorite person (your library will have some)
  • IMAGINARY friend (don’t tell me you’ve never considered this one!)

J IS FOR

  • Jacks (order some here right now)
  • Jump rope 
  • JIF peanut butter (you’re a choosy mom, aren’t you?)
  • Jumbo something (crayon, coloring book – These are probably in your house)
  • Jingle bell 
  • Jelly beans
  • Joystick (any game console remote will do, even pretend plastic play remotes)
  • Jigsaw puzzle

K IS FOR

  • Kite 
  • Kitten, Kangaroo, Koala (stuffed animal bin? or printout of funny kitty cat MEME)
  • Khaki (clothes or use as COLOR)
  • Key Lime (an actual lime or use as COLOR or SCENT or FLAVOR)
  • Key chain
  • Kittens First Full Moon

L IS FOR

  • Legos
  • Toy (plastic figure or stuffed) Leopard, Lion, Lemur, Lamb, Lizard
  • Lollipop
  • Leaf collection
  • Lasso
  • Lavender (either the color or scent)

M IS FOR

  • Music (email/text link of child’s favorite song to teacher and ask her to play)
  • Musical instrument
  • Any toy that plays MUSIC
  • Money (use the spare change you can find in your car, quick!) (if you have enough coins for each child to get one – winner!!!)
  • Mail (save cards your child receives!)
  • Mystery Box (put anything in a box and let class guess what’s in it)

N IS FOR

  • Navy (color)
  • Nonagon (shape, print and cut from here)
  • Nine of anything (matchbox cars, pennies, Styrofoam cups to stack)
  • Nerf ball
  • Neon colored something (t-shirt in closet?)
  • Name tags (a pack of blank ones, the teacher can use as a name tag craft activity)

O IS FOR

  • Orange (color or scent or flavor, see initial suggestions under title)
  • A carton of orange juice (McDonald’s drive thru, anyone?)
  • October (tear a sheet out of a calendar that’s in your junk drawer; Little Miss holds it up and says, “What holiday is in October?”
  • Olivia book,  Oh the Places You’ll Go
  • Old (in a child’s mind, everything is old – just be sure your child can call it an old book, an old postcard, an old banana …)

P IS FOR

  • Pear, Peach, Pineapple, Pumpkin, Plum (or the scent/flavor)
  • Picnic basket (any basket you have will work for this!)
  • Pink/Purple colored anything
  • Pretty Picture (for budding artists, share personal work)
  • Postcard (stop by the drug store and get a few; the children can “address” them in class as an activity)
  • Penguin, Panda, Porcupine, Panther, Parakeet (stuffed animal in the house?)
  • Puzzle (especially if you didn’t take one for J WEEK)

Q IS FOR

  • Queen’s crown (have construction paper at home? you can quickly make one)
  • Quilt 
  • Quinoa (unopened bag from grocery store, uncooked) or Quick-cooking oats container
  • Quiz (print one out or write out simple fill in the number sequence that child can do; they share, “this is a quiz I did!”)
  • Quart container, filled or empty
  • Quarters 
  • Quintuplets (print any image)
  • Quartz (color or a rock; fyi: Mast General Store has “gemstones” downstairs near the candy bins) 

R IS FOR

  • Red colored anything
  • Raspberry (flavor or scent)
  • Reindeer (get out a Christmas decoration or a Rudolph book)
  • Rain Gauge 
  • Rolling Pin
  • Record (really! and player if you have one and are willing to demonstrate) or Radio

S IS FOR

  • Sugar cookies (it’s always time for a party in preschool)
  • Shoe, Shirt, Shoelaces, Sweater, Scarf, Silly Socks 
  • Stickers (to share! extra credit if Smiley Face Stickers)
  • Spoon or Spatula
  • Straws (really, kids love them)
  • Swim suit (especially if it’s winter and everyone’s waiting for summer)

T IS FOR

  • Toy (Yes, you’ve got it made. Right before the difficult U WEEK, you can just bring any toy!)
  • Tangerine (item, color, scent, or flavor)
  • Talking doll, or other toy that talks
  • Toothbrush (new, still in package – yours will be ready to brush tonight!)
  • T-Rex

U IS FOR

  • Umbrella (or, cocktail umbrellas can be bought or made)
  • Upside down pineapple cake (ask beforehand!)
  • Uniform (sport or dance or community helper dress up costume)
  • Uncle’s picture (or live visit to class)
  • Ukulele music (send teacher this link to play in class) 
  • Ugly anything (easiest of all, but please use discretion! my go-to is UGLY BANANA as we usually have one that’s blackened, but only if you didn’t take if for O WEEK)

V IS FOR

  • Valentine (forget the season, just make a simple fold-able heart card!)
  • Violet (color)
  • Vanilla (scent or flavor)
  • Video (send teacher link to a favorite short video to play – very short; or an old videocassette to display)
  • Vase of flowers (for the teacher)

W IS FOR

  • Watermelon (scent or flavor)
  • Wisteria (flower or scent)
  • White (white crayon or chalk is fun to use on black paper; send enough for all. Or, send dollar store supplies for this trick.)
  • Water gun
  • Water bottle (everybody has a cool one shelved around somewhere, don’t they?)
  • Winter clothing (mittens, gloves, hat, etc. especially if it is NOT winter)

X IS FOR

  • Tying shoes. If yours can do it, then they can proudly do the X method for their class. 
  • Finding treasure. Bring a treasure map with X marks the spot! (Make one or print one)
  • They’ll be plenty of x-ray skeletons or xylophones, so why not just bring out: 

 XANDER! This bunny’s name is Xander … maybe. 😉

Y IS FOR

  • Yellow (lemon candy is usually yellow)
  • Yarn (yellow yarn?)
  • Yearbook (you do know where one is in the attic, don’t you?)
  • Yardstick (they can measure everyone and everything)
  • Yogurt cups to share
  • Yesterday’s lunch (Look! I didn’t like yesterday’s lunch, but mom says today’s is YUMMY!)

Z IS FOR

  • Zippered anything 
  • Zoo ticket (save one for this this week!)
  • Zucchini (plan ahead and make zucchini bread – the kind with chocolate chips!)
  • Zero – As in, I brought ZERO things for SHOW AND TELL THIS LAST WEEK OF SCHOOL!

 What ideas would you add to the list?

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