BRRR!! It’s cold… just kidding! I am in Southwest Florida BUT I think it’s important to bring Winter to these kids! I was trying to brainstorm what I could do for our dramatic play area while including “winter” but also teaching about habitats and winter adaptations. My kids LOVE taking care of pets and making all the pets feel better. This is how I came to create the “Winter Rehabilitation and Winter Zoo!”
It came out sooooo cute and the kids had a BLAST learning all about animals!
We just finished the floors in my building and this was the FIRST dramatic play set up! I am excited to have much more room! Like I always say… make it work for you! You don’t have to have this much space to make this memorable for the kids!!
This is the “after” picture! Crazy huh? Let me explain how I set it up…
The Set Up
I had different “areas” included in the dramatic play setup.
1. Rehab/Vet Hospital (x ray room and exam room)
2. Winter Zoo
4. Janitor’s Closet
5. Dressing Room
All the set-ups worked together to make one whole “Dramatic Play Theme.” To make it cohesive I added “I can” posters to each of the areas! It really helped the kids get into “their roles” and show the “expectations” of each area.
There is so much opportunity for hitting multiple standards with this set up!
Each day I would teach a couple new animals and add it to our Winter Zoo. We researched where they lived (habitat) and their needs (food). Then I had the students match up the habitat pictures to the correct animal. Then during the dramatic play time, students fed the animals! This is where I used our kitchen area in the set up!
Mrs. Marie shared a picture of her student’s feeding the winter animals!
After feeding the animals, the students would fill out the “feeding forms” to document. Adorable!
We learned about what animal is a carnivore and herbivore! Kids enjoyed sorting the food too!
Students counted money by selling “tickets” to the zoo! I added winter animal mini toys from Oriental trading and prices for the giftshop [Green tubs below]. I didn’t get a picture of that unfortunately.
I included MANY animals for you to choose from. I purchased ALL of them on Amazon!! I linked all animals in my TPT resource for easy access!
The animal hospital was a hit because students loved taking care of animals and helping them get better!
As always, we have necklaces for the “staff”, hat, their tools, vehicles and uniform. I purchased the vet costume from Melissa and Doug but I included an iron version as well!
The kids thought it was so cool to see the x rays of the animals they learned about! I like that this light table doesn’t take a huge amount of room and was perfect for this set up!
Of course I labeled EVERYTHING!!
The kids just thought they were “playing” but oh boy were they engaged in TONS of academics! Here is a preview of what we learned!
Take a look at some other set ups using this dramatic play theme!!