Sometimes, the stars align and whammo – Kismetl. When observing one of my students in a three-year old classroom last week, I found them exploring the world of bugs and insects. All around the room I found evidence of their explorations, from an ant farm on the windowsill, to a butterfly habitat on the science table. There were spider hand puppets (one girl reminded my that, “spiders are NOT insects because they have 8 legs.” Who knew?) and worms in the sensory table.
On another little table sat one of my favorite games for preschoolers. The Snail’s Pace Race moves at the perfect speed for young children and is noncompetitive. The children take turns tossing the 6-colored dice and moving the matching snail one space at a time. Together, they move the snails across the board, inch-by-inch.
If you have never played a noncompetitive game with your children, I think you will find it quite delightful. You might find the children banding together in the hopes that one snail finishes before another, but they mostly just take their turns and watch the movement unfold.
This is a great game for one-to-one correspondence. For the children that have achieved it, they will not need any support, but for those who have not, an adult or another child might be needed to help them move one square at a time.