March is National Noodle Month. Preschool and elementary school teachers can have a lot of fun integrating this theme into a learning unit.
Color the noodles and use for various activities:
Sorting game-have the children place the same colored noodle in a bowl of the same matching color
"Identify the color" game. Give each child a bowl of colored noodles, one of each. Call out the color and see if the child can pick it out from all of the others. Have them hold it in the air.
Bead them into necklaces. The necklaces can be made in patterns that the children create themselves. Younger preschoolers can bead them any way they like.
Create collages by gluing the noodles onto construction paper. You can talk about the different shapes and compare and contrast while the child is gluing
Play a counting game by counting out the noodles in a bowl given to the children. Be sure to keep the number you count to age appropriate.
Matching game. Have a bowl of noodles and the children can match them by color or by the type of noodle.
To help with oral presentations, have a child select a piece of pasta and describe it to the class at circle time.
For snack that week, have the children eat noodles!
Have the children do research about the history of pasta. This can lead to additional research about China and Italy.
Brainstorm a list of the different types of pasta. Once you are done, you can make worksheets having the children alphabetize the words, create a word search or a crossword puzzle.
If a parent volunteers are available, ask them to bring in their own pasta machines and have the children make their own. Then they can eat it for snack!
Whatever unit you are doing in math, use pasta to help teach the concepts and use for word problems.
Talk about pasta and it's place on the food pyramid and how it is important to your health and well-being.
Here is a list of books, both fiction and non-fiction, that integrate with this theme:
More Spaghetti I Say!By Rita Golden Gelman
Daddy Makes the Best Spaghetti by Anna Grossnickle Hines
Oodles of Noodles by Diana Hendry
The Story of Noodles by Ying Chang Compestine
Alice in Pastaland by Alexandra Wright
Noodle Man: The Pasta Superhero by April Pulley Sayre
Pino and Signora's Pasta by Janet Pederson
Let's Visit a Spaghetti Factory by Melinda Corey
How Did That Get to My Table? By Emily Dolber
Pasta By Gretchen WIll Mayo