Early Lit Bits: Learning with Crafts

Ice Cream Game

Summer is just around the corner and it will once again be ice cream season. Once you’ve polished off the last delicious scoop from the bucket in your freezer, you can make this fun early literacy game with the leftover packaging.

  • Ping-Pong balls
  • Permanent marker (adults only)
  • Clean, empty ice cream bucket
  • Ice cream scoop
  • Plastic bowls

To Make:

  • Write letters (or numbers, shapes, or words) on the Ping-Pong balls with the marker
  • Put the Ping-Pong balls in the empty bucket

To Use:

  • Have your child use the ice cream scoop to “dip” a Ping-Pong ball from the bucket.
  • If your child can identify what is on the ball, then they can put the ball in their bowl. If they cannot, the ball goes back into the bucket and they can try again.
  • Keep scooping until all of the Ping-Pong balls have been scooped from the bucket.
  • (If you have more than one child, have children take turns scooping balls from the bucket.)

Other Ideas:

Visit an ice cream stand with your child and talk about the different flavors and colors of the ice cream. Look up a simple recipe for homemade ice cream on the internet and try making your own at home with your child.
(From Making Toys for Preschool Children by Linda G. Miller and Mary Jo Gibbs)

This article originally appeared in our Early Lit Bits eNewsletter. Read the most recent issue online or sign up to receive this monthly update highlighting early literacy tips and resources for parents and caregivers.


Written by Sheri


Sheri is the Kent District Library ILS & Electronic Resources Coordinator. She loves KDL’s eBook collection and her NOOK because they allow her to fit a whole stack of books in her purse to take with her wherever she goes.

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